The increasing frequency of his visits to Singapore, either for medical reasons or on personal business, is seriously disrupting government operations as no decisions can be made in his absence. The Cabinet does not sit. Zanu (PF) ministers refuse to attend any gatherings called by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai – as happened last week.
It is ridiculous that only one man can chair Cabinet meetings and make all the decisions. Why do we have two vice presidents and a Prime Minister if everything depends on the President? We can understand it when the Zanu (PF) Politburo suspends its meetings in Mugabe’s absence. Party business does not impact on the affairs of the nation. But it is quite another matter to suspend government business.
Mugabe’s frequent absences are also having a negative impact on the agreed joint peace rallies, which were supposed to be held throughout the country to encourage Zimbabweans across the political divide to shun violence.
The recent statement by Michael Sikhosana, the provincial spokesperson for Zanu (PF) in Matebeleland is telling. “Our party elders have not given us the green light (to hold joint peace rallies with MDC),” he said.
In the past 12 months Mugabe has been to Singapore nine times that we know about, at an estimated cost of $3 million per trip. The reason given for his latest trip – to make arrangements for his daughter’s post-graduate studies –is lame to say the least. And if it is true – why are Zimbabwean taxpayers footing the bill? This abuse of state resources has got to stop.
The secrecy with which these visits are handled is laughable and has fuelled the rumour mills at home and abroad about how seriously ill the aged president is. The excuse of the cataract operation check-up, used many times to justify last year’s trips, has worn extremely thin. No matter what fabrications Zanu (PF) spin doctors might concoct, most Zimbabweans believe Mugabe is seriously ill.
We’re paying for this. We deserve the truth.Post published in: Editor: Wilf Mbanga