Zimbabwe is full of bauxite, coal, diamonds, gold, platinum, nickel and many other valuable minerals under her belly. Mining has been going on for decades, but not for Zimbabwe. For a longtime, the mines were run by security forces to prop up Robert Mugabe’s party.
With this kind of resource mismanagement, his ouster is no doubt a Christmas gift to Zimbabwe. Even though his going seemed far away beyond the horizon, it was imminent.
Had he escaped a military putsch, the parliamentary impeachment would have given the 93-year-old a clear “KO,” still he would have gone. Ceding power he misused for nearly four decades seemed to bother Mugabe more.
But with enormous pressure that kept building every single second from the public, ZANU-PF and the army for him to resign, the old man had to choose between one choice (to resign) and no choice at all. Eventually, the black “Olympus” fell. However, immunity has been offered him and family, Gucci-Grace will still freely live in Harare.
Now, On Friday, an interim president expected to lead Zimbabwe till 2018 elections was sworn in. Emmerson Mnangagwa is the beneficiary of a wide sweeping military and ruling party support.
Power could change hands, but it does not mean total salvation from the grip of a dictatorial regime- -at worse it could be a continuation of Mugabe’s regime (in different hands) along with formulation and implementation of rotten public policies, but at best it could be a facilitation of easing of tension between Zimbabwe and the donor community, that will in turn lead to a resurrection of the economy. .
From a gerontocracy to yet another, could be Zimbabwe’s political fate- Harare’s centripetal future. A country whose first president after independence mismanaged the economy and drove the country to a cul-de-sac, with hyperinflationary rate rising up to 500 billion per cent by 2008-2009. The second highest in world history.
The nearly four decades of Mugabe’s regime plunged the Southern African nation into an abyss of economic disaster whose impact is palpable.
The script with which Harare is ruled seems to be replacing a 93-year-old protagonist with another 75-year-old Emmerson Mnangagwa, a former vice president in the regime that wrote untold suffering to the people of Zimbabwe.
All Zimbabweans can hope for is that the situation won’t be one of the same script but different casts.
The revolutionary fighter now fronted by the ruling party ZANU-PF is neither a saint. His hands are gory with the killings that happened right in front of his nose while he was serving as security minister in Mugabe’s government, according to Reuters.
During his tenure as security chief, a series of massacres were visited against those believed to be anti-Mugabe presidency. The Ndebele population was gunned down by the Zimbabwe National Army- -North Korean trained 5th Brigade from 1983-84.
Thousands were detained and more than 20,000 people were killed according to International Association of Genocide Scholars, with survivors made to dance on mass graves of their slain neighbors.
Why is ZANU-PF and military determined to keep a man with malodorous political credentials like Mnangagwa in power, who over saw the callous slaughter of Zimbabwean nationals on a grand scale? Is it that he will make a better dictator?
Or is it because there is no one among the party members able to take on the opposition without letting power slip off the hands of ZANU-PF?
A shift of power to Emmerson Mnangagwa could be a more of the same scenario for Zimbabwe.