ZANU PF fans now thoroughly dissatisfied with ruling establishment
Now that the ruling ZANU PF primary elections for parliamentary and ward candidates have come and gone, what lessons can the nation draw?
Of course, there can never be only one thing to be read from these internal processes – with some people, understandably, even coming up with contradictory conclusions.
This is to be expected – taking into account the difficulties associated with making deductions from such complex procedures.
Some analysts have noted the apparent low numbers in so-called ‘assisted voters’ – those, for one reason or another (such as illiteracy, old age or disability) have to be helped by polling officers in casting their vote.
Which is quite strange considering the thousands who end up requiring the same assistance during national elections – raising strong suspicions over the real objective – with most believing this is a scheme to rig the voting process, whereby voters are forced to cast ballots for ruling party candidates.
Nonetheless, I also have my own curious observations.
These primary elections witnessed the voting out of numerous notable names – who had become synonymous with the ruling establishment – either as long-standing MPs (Members of Parliament), or as Cabinet Ministers.
These individuals include Mayor Justice Wadyajena, Jenfan Muswere, Kindness Paradza, Mary Mliswa, Webster Shamu, Sekai Nzenza, Mangaliso Ndlovu, David Musabayana, John Mangwiro, Nokuthula Matsikenyere, Dexter Nduna, Joseph Chinotimba, Phillip Chiyangwa, and others.
The question is why?
Why have so many well-known and established names been rejected by the electorate, more so supporters of their own party?
Just as analyzing the electoral process itself, any explanation as to the reasons for this rejection can be as uncountable as grains of sand, as well as being on different ends of the spectrum.
What I posit, nonetheless, it that this was a way for ZANU PF grassroots members to express their utter disgruntlement and dissatisfaction with the ruling establishment, in its entirety.
This is in light of the unbearable pain and suffering that the Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa government has meted upon the people of Zimbabwe in general – with rural communities bearing the brunt, as half the country’s population (who are largely resident there) live in extreme poverty, and over 68 per cent food insecure.
These are also regions that have, in the main, been abandoned and neglected since Zimbabwe attained independence in 1980 – which still lack anything resembling roads (besides the main highways connecting them with urban areas), and the citizenry having to walk nearly 20 kilometers to the nearest health care institutions.Most of the few educational facilities which have been built in the past 43 years are lagging behind – as some pupils still learn under trees or in disused tobacco barns, without anything that provides any meaningful science and technology teaching.
This, in addition to the glaring absence of electricity supply – since almost 90 per cent of rural homes are not connected to the national grid – let alone having access to decent ablution facilities.
There is no tangible economic development to write home about – which can uplift the livelihoods of rural folk – that results in real financial independence and empowerment.
As the situation stands today, the government is completely satisfied with these people being eternally beholden and dependent on the ruling elite for their survival – which makes it much easier to control them.
It is also thoroughly disturbing when some of these rural areas are situated on vast mineral resources – yet, never benefiting in any meaningful manner, besides menial jobs and mediocre ‘development’.
This, in spite of mining companies awarded licenses to exploit these minerals (as gold, diamonds, coal, lithium, and platinum) not only reaping billions of dollars in revenue – but also permitted to forcibly evict local communities from their ancestral lands.
These are areas where these ZANU PF sitting MPs were rejected.
What we need to remember is that, rural areas are where the citizenry are denied access to other political alternatives, on account of opposition parties practically being barred from freely campaigning in these areas.
As such, it would not be surprising at all if these folk know of no other options, should they no longer desire being led and represented by failed ZANU PF officials.
On top of this, there is a deep-seated fear of voting out, in their totality, the ruling party – with savage intimidation and violence being the order of the day against any perceived opposition (particularly, CCC) supporters – who are also denied access to any aid (be it agricultural inputs or food, in the event of drought).
Consequently, they find themselves trapped with ZANU PF – albeit, knowing all to well that these are the same people who have ruined their lives, and turned their livelihoods into a horrifying nightmare.
What, then, are they to do?
I am quite convinced that booting out all whom they have associated with power, and regarded as the faces of the establishment that has caused them untold suffering, was the only way left for these people.
It is far much safer – as a way of safeguarding their security, whilst at the same time rejecting their tormentors – without voting for the opposition, of which they are also denied access.
It is dangerous business voting for the opposition in these rural areas – where hundreds have already lost their loves – more so, after the defeat of then president, Robert Gabriel Mugabe, at the hands of the late opposition MDC-T leader, Morgan Richard Tsvangirai, in the 2008 presidential elections.
This barbaric reign of terror is a handy weapon for ZANU PF – which they readily use to instill unparalleled terror in the hearts and minds of rural populations.
The party is fully aware that, under normal circumstances, they would lose, hands down, to the opposition – all things being normal.
If the opposition were permitted to campaign freely – without citizens being intimidated, and genuinely free, fair and credible elections conducted – ZANU PF would be history.
It is an undeniable fact that the regime has failed the people of Zimbabwe, in the most unpardonable and horrendous manner – and, it would not take a second thought for the electorate to kick them out of power.
The greatest tragedy is only that – in rural areas, they are not afforded this right.
As such, kicking out their current representatives – even though, only within the ruling party itself – is the best they can do.
In other news- Zanu-PF primaries preliminary results out
RESULTS for the Zanu-PF primary elections are still trickling in, with a mixed bag of young Turks and the old guard sailing through.The results are however, still subject to confirmation by the Politburo.
Preliminary results announced by the party’s National Political Commissar Mike Bimha yesterday indicated that some ministers and veteran legislators fell by the wayside as the ruling party entrenches democracy and rejuvenated itself ahead of this year’s national harmonised elections. Learn more