PM and Mandaza force ZANU (PF)’s hand

The passing on of national hero, Edgar 2Boy Tekere last week was a major loss to the nation as well as to his family. His declaration by the Zanu (PF) party as a national hero was a surprise to most of us who have known the former liberation party for some time.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s visit to pay his condolences to the Tekere family, coupled with Ibbo Mandaza’s assumption of the role of the Tekere family spokesperson got Zanu (PF) gravely worried and desperate to avoid any further loss of political support in Manicaland and throughout the country.

Mandaza lost the favour of Zanu (PF) as long ago as 2008 when he worked hand-in-hand with Simba Makoni to upstage Robert Mugabe from the position of President of this country. The fact that he masqueraded as spokesperson of the Tekere family created a seriously threatening situation for the decaying and outgoing ruling party, Zanu (PF).

Even more threatening to Mugabe’s party was the fact that Tsvangirai had the audacity to visit the Tekere home to show his respect for the late liberator. This was viewed by Zanu (PF) as too much to swallow. It was clear that with only a few parliamentary seats from Manicaland, the party was very likely to lose more ground should it deny Tekere the status of a national hero.

Tsvangirai’s visit made it even more imperative, if not desperate, for Mugabe’s party to engage in serious damage control by granting Tekere the national hero status in spite of his numerous political “sins” committed over the years. It is therefore Ibbo Mandaza and Morgan Tsvangirai who forced Zanu (PF)’s hand to grant Tekere the well deserved national hero status.

Now the party has more trouble on its hands. The people of Matabeleland and the former and current members of PF-Zapu, or just Zapu, as well as those in MDC-N are likely to ask Mugabe and his ilk why they denied such deserving people as Lesabe, Gibson Sibanda and Mabhena, the so-called national hero status. Members of Zanu (Ndonga) and the now defunct UANC are asking why both Ndabaningi Sithole and Abel Muzorewa were denied national hero status.

In the past, Mugabe has categorically stated that the status is only for people who were in Zanu (PF) and PF-Zapu during the liberation struggle. But such people have to remain consistent in their behaviour otherwise they will not qualify for the coveted status. The Tekere case has effectively forced the party itself to behave in an inconsistent manner since we all know that Tekere once or twice defected from or was kicked out its ranks. All the other people mentioned above committed similar or related political “sins” but were not pardoned. As far as the Matabeleland provinces are concerned, Zanu (PF) has effectively sealed its own fate. It will not win even one parliamentary seat in those provinces.

In relation to Manicaland, the granting of national hero status to Tekere will still not help Zanu (PF) in the next elections. The political violence that is being perpetrated by party elements in parts of that province has effectively alienated the people from the decadent party, and they are not going to vote for it come next elections. Zanu (PF) is rather good at shooting itself in the foot. This explains why there are reportedly plans to deploy some 80 000 soldiers and militia throughout the country to campaign for Mugabe and Zanu (PF) at the next election. This is also a good reason for the SADC to put its foot down and force Mugabe to abide by the provisions of the GPA and the election roadmap. May 2Boy’s soul rest in eternal peace.

John Makumbe

The passing on of national hero, Edgar 2Boy Tekere last week was a major loss to the nation as well as to his family. His declaration by the Zanu (PF) party as a national hero was a surprise to most of us who have known the former liberation party for some time.

Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s visit to pay his condolences to the Tekere family, coupled with Ibbo Mandaza’s assumption of the role of the Tekere family spokesperson got Zanu (PF) gravely worried and desperate to avoid any further loss of political support in Manicaland and throughout the country.

Mandaza lost the favour of Zanu (PF) as long ago as 2008 when he worked hand-in-hand with Simba Makoni to upstage Robert Mugabe from the position of President of this country. The fact that he masqueraded as spokesperson of the Tekere family created a seriously threatening situation for the decaying and outgoing ruling party, Zanu (PF).

Even more threatening to Mugabe’s party was the fact that Tsvangirai had the audacity to visit the Tekere home to show his respect for the late liberator. This was viewed by Zanu (PF) as too much to swallow. It was clear that with only a few parliamentary seats from Manicaland, the party was very likely to lose more ground should it deny Tekere the status of a national hero.

Tsvangirai’s visit made it even more imperative, if not desperate, for Mugabe’s party to engage in serious damage control by granting Tekere the national hero status in spite of his numerous political “sins” committed over the years. It is therefore Ibbo Mandaza and Morgan Tsvangirai who forced Zanu (PF)’s hand to grant Tekere the well deserved national hero status.

Now the party has more trouble on its hands. The people of Matabeleland and the former and current members of PF-Zapu, or just Zapu, as well as those in MDC-N are likely to ask Mugabe and his ilk why they denied such deserving people as Lesabe, Gibson Sibanda and Mabhena, the so-called national hero status. Members of Zanu (Ndonga) and the now defunct UANC are asking why both Ndabaningi Sithole and Abel Muzorewa were denied national hero status.

In the past, Mugabe has categorically stated that the status is only for people who were in Zanu (PF) and PF-Zapu during the liberation struggle. But such people have to remain consistent in their behaviour otherwise they will not qualify for the coveted status. The Tekere case has effectively forced the party itself to behave in an inconsistent manner since we all know that Tekere once or twice defected from or was kicked out its ranks. All the other people mentioned above committed similar or related political “sins” but were not pardoned. As far as the Matabeleland provinces are concerned, Zanu (PF) has effectively sealed its own fate. It will not win even one parliamentary seat in those provinces.

In relation to Manicaland, the granting of national hero status to Tekere will still not help Zanu (PF) in the next elections. The political violence that is being perpetrated by party elements in parts of that province has effectively alienated the people from the decadent party, and they are not going to vote for it come next elections. Zanu (PF) is rather good at shooting itself in the foot. This explains why there are reportedly plans to deploy some 80 000 soldiers and militia throughout the country to campaign for Mugabe and Zanu (PF) at the next election. This is also a good reason for the SADC to put its foot down and force Mugabe to abide by the provisions of the GPA and the election roadmap. May 2Boy’s soul rest in eternal peace.

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