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Internal contradictions – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary: 27th January 2018 PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 28 January 2018 14:49

President Mnangagwa got a good hearing at the annual ‘movers and shakers’ jamboree at Davos in the Swiss Alps. People were curious to see whether he was another boring lunatic like his mentor Mugabe. They were quite reassured. 

Absent was the pseudo-Marxist ranting about colonial oppression and capitalist looting – always rather ironic given that the Great Man was adept at oppression and looting himself without any foreign assistance. (Just the help of the same type of tarted-up chancers who always appear at Davos.)

But the truth is that Mnangagwa can only be a disappointment. He promises miracles but the crucial things he can’t deliver. His problems were exposed in an interview with the BBC in Davos in which he was questioned about Gukurahundi. He made it clear that Zanu PF would not apologise or allow a real truth and reconciliation process as took place in South Africa. Of course, the circumstances there were different: the Whites in South Africa were out of power when they confessed their crimes in return for an amnesty. In Zimbabwe the perpetrators are still clinging to power and want to stay in control (see: https://www.news24.com/Africa/Zimbabwe/victims-relive-zimbabwe-massacres-that-taint-new-leader-20180126).

Zanu PF’s looting is another problem. A stream of virtue signals from Mnangagwa – top people must declare their assets etc – seem designed to reassure the until-now despised West. But he will not convince Zimbabweans that corruption has been dealt with while current cabinet members are contaminated by ill-gotten gains.

And then there is the question of Mugabe himself. Mnangagwa says he has not been given immunity from prosecution but what will he do about the flood of court cases which will engulf the Mugabe family? A private school is seeking to recover land in Borrowdale seized by Grace. According to reports Mugabe himself turned up to chase off the police  (see: https://www.news24.com/Africa/Zimbabwe/top-harare-school-in-bid-to-reclaim-prime-land-grabbed-by-grace-mugabe-20180124). Another court case against the family has been launched to recover a farm in Mazowe stolen by the Mugabes.

Is the country’s patron saint to be hounded in the courts until he dies? He is the god of Zanu PF not of Zimbabweans as a whole and, if Zimbabwe is to emerge as a new and free country, he will have to be disowned and dispatched into exile – perhaps to one of the African countries described so colourfully by President Trump.

Other points

  • We were pleased to find in our archives some photos of Roy and Heather Bennett’s visit to the Vigil on 6th August 2005. They are on our flickr page: https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/albums/72157691924334334.
  • It was good to have with us Jenatry Muranganwa, a stalwart from the early days of the Vigil. He enlivened the day with his energetic singing, dancing and drumming.
  • Thanks to those who came early to help set up and stayed till the end of the Vigil to help pack up: Eunice Mapunde, Margaret Munenge, Tsana May, Pearl Shambare and Ephraim Tapa. Thanks also to Margaret, Eunice and Tsana for looking after the front table and to Pearl, Enniah Dube, Yvonne Makombe, Margaret, Ephraim and Jennifer Senzere for putting up the banners and tarpaulin on a very wet and windy day. A special thank you to Pearl (her hands getting colder and colder) for climbing up and down our ladder to secure the tarpaulin. Thanks also to David Makuyana, Jenatry, Sipho Ndlovu and Jonathan Kariwo for helping to take down the banners and tarpaulin at the end.

For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website. The facebook page for our sister organisation Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) (https://www.facebook.com/ROHR-Zimbabwe-Restoration-of-Human-Rights-301811392835) has been hijacked by destructive elements from a group calling itself ZHRO. Please be advised that any postings on this page are not posted by ROHR.

FOR THE RECORD: 15 signed the register.

EVENTS AND NOTICES:

  • ROHR all members’ meeting: Saturday 3rd February from 10 am. Venue: Strand Continental Hotel (first floor lounge), 143 Strand, London WC2R 1JA. From the Vigil it’s about a ten minute walk, in the direction away from Trafalgar Square. The Strand Continental is situated on the south side of the Strand between Somerset House and the turn off onto Waterloo Bridge. The entrance is marked by a sign at street level. Nearest underground: Temple (District and Circle lines) and Holborn.
  • ROHR Central London branch meeting. Saturday 17th February from 11.30 am – 1.30 pm. Venue: Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XX. Contact: Daisy Fabian 07708653640, Maxmus Savanhu 07397809056, Sipho Ndlovu 07400566013.
  • The Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe (ROHR) is the Vigil’s partner organization based in Zimbabwe. ROHR grew out of the need for the Vigil to have an organization on the ground in Zimbabwe which reflected the Vigil’s mission statement in a practical way. ROHR in the UK actively fundraises through membership subscriptions, events, sales etc to support the activities of ROHR in Zimbabwe. Please note that the official website of ROHR Zimbabwe is http://www.rohrzimbabwe.org/. Any other website claiming to be the official website of ROHR in no way represents us.
  • The Vigil’s book ‘Zimbabwe Emergency’ is based on our weekly diaries. It records how events in Zimbabwe have unfolded over the past 15 years as seen by the diaspora in the UK. It chronicles the economic disintegration, violence, growing oppression and political manoeuvring – and the tragic human cost involved. It is available at the Vigil for £10. All proceeds will go to the Vigil and our sister organisation the Restoration of Human Rights in Zimbabwe's work in Zimbabwe. The book is also available from Amazon.
  • Zimbabwe Action Forum meets regularly after the Vigil to discuss ways to help those back in Zimbabwe to fight oppression and achieve true democracy.
  • Zimbabwe Yes We Can Movement holds meetings in London as the political face of ROHR and the Vigil.
  • Facebook pages:
    Vigil: https://www.facebook.com/zimbabwevigil
    ROHR: https://www.facebook.com/Restoration-of-Human-Rights-ROHR-Zimbabwe-International-370825706588551/
    ZAF: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Zimbabwe-Action-Forum-ZAF/490257051027515
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