A lot has happened since the July 30 harmonised elections. There are plenty of things that made sense and many other things that cannot be comprehended. Some results made sense while others hardly did. I have always argued that the only one who can prove rigging should allege rigging.
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That said, we cannot escape the stubborn fact that Emmerson Mnangagwa’s victory in the presidential election was and remains controversial. Controversial because it is simply unfathomable that, in Masvingo, for instance, MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa would fail to win a single parliamentary seat and yet go on to have people vote for him overwhelmingly in the presidential vote in the same province.
Honestly this is an assault on common sense to believe that such outcomes are a true reflection of the will of the people. Again, former President Robert Mugabe’s ghost in areas likes Uzumba in particular and the rural vote in general showed up to the dismay of the many who had anticipated change.
The anomalies are just too many. And whoever thought that a polling station with 611 registered voters would have 992 people voting by mid-day as happened in Norton? A thick volume can be compiled showing the embarrassing and unimaginable inconsistencies in the elections that have ushered in Mnangagwa to the throne.
Needless to say, the credibility of the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) will forever remain tainted to the generality of Zimbabweans.
However, all having been said and done, the fact is that the incoming government has the herculean task of transforming the economy more than anything else. Zanu PF has, since the turn of the century, ensured that it comes out victorious under Mugabe, but the million dollar question has always been the economy.
Mugabe will testify that winning the election is one thing and winning the economic battle is another. The dust is slowly settling and people are steadily adjusting to the reality of another gruelling five years with Zanu PF in power.
Will this Zanu PF party deliver on jobs? Will it revive the long dead industries? The truth of the matter is that the majority of people in Zimbabwe seem to have lost confidence in Zanu PF’s ability to deliver on the economic issues that have troubled the nation for decades.
Zanu PF supporters can rejoice all they want and stick the knife where it hurts the opposition, but the brutal truth is that winning an election is not an end in itself; the economy must work and international relations must be mended.
In my considered view, Zanu PF’s victory, whether rigged or not, does not translate to a better Zimbabwe. I see no reason why anyone would hate Mnangagwa or Obert Mpofu, for example. I suppose no one hates political characters; it is the hunger and joblessness that Zimbabweans are against. Zimbabweans want to be freed from the yoke of slavery in other countries. They want their pride and dignity back.
If Mnangagwa’s administration can bring back the lost Zimbabwean pride, then people would be grateful. If his government can deliver on the things that Zimbabweans are yearning for, then Zimbabweans, especially in urban areas cannot remain vengeful against Mnangagwa’s government.
Zanu PF must appreciate that they are very much in the firing line of receiving sanctions should Zimbabwe continue to be largely viewed as a pariah State.
Victory is hollow if Zimbabwe remains the laughing stock of the world. Mnangagwa must understand that beyond this political euphoria, the economy is anxiously waiting for someone to mend it.
This has absolutely nothing to do with winning the presidential vote in many constituencies. This is far divorced from rigging an election, presuming any rigging took place.
It is overwhelmingly urgent that Mnangagwa, if he values economic recovery, goes for an inclusive deal. The truth of the matter is that Zanu PF cannot go it alone on the economy; it certainly needs its nemesis. There is a world of difference between politics and the economy. Politics does not necessarily require one to have a ‘brain’ but the economy requires brains. I have long stated that there is a wide gap between ruling and leading. Politics produces rulers, but a well-run economy yields leaders. To rule over people one simply needs to be in possession of a gun but to lead people demands more than brutality. It requires handling of national affairs in such a way that people willingly follow.
The message therefore to Zanu PF if reviving Zimbabwe is important to them is that the economy needs to be fixed. People may ululate about “ED is my leader”, but ultimately it’s the economy which must be fixed.
Beyond the madness of politics, the economy must be fixed.