Zim regime persecution of activists borders on idiocy, as even Rhodesians arrested nationalists on prosecutable offences!

In life, there are bound to be crooks!

Tendai Ruben Mbofana

That is just a fact of life on planet Earth.

However, amongst these crooks, there are the clever ones – and, those who are just plain duds!

Those who love following crime investigation and court stories (as I do) would know exactly what I am talking about.

We have come across accounts of some felons, whose brilliance always left us wondering why such people misplaced and wasted their amazing intellectual gifts on criminal pursuits – by virtue of the pure genius in which they planned and carried out their near perfect nefarious deeds.

Then, there are those who committed the most foolish crimes, such that even presiding judges in their criminal prosecution shook their heads in utter disbelief and shock at the manner of sheer idiocy exhibited in the commission of the offence.

That is exactly what I think about whenever I study the various types of oppressors and tyrants that this world has had the grave misfortune of being subjugated by – especially considering our own tragic experiences in Zimbabwe.

Who can deny that there are dictators whose oppressive tactics – no matter how sadistic and vile – may still be regarded as works of brilliance and intellect?

We have studied such ruthless tyrants as Napoleon Bonaparte of France, Roman Emperor Julius Caesar, and even Shaka king of the Zulu – whose mastery, genius, and wit set them apart from the rest of their ilk.

On the other hand, we had Mussolini of Italy – whom, history tells us, was so inept, he could not even defeat a weaker and poorly- equiped Ethiopians (Abyssinians) – becoming a laughing stock, such that he was regarded as an embarrassing liability by his counterpart, Nazi Germany’s Adolf Hitler.

Where I am going with all this?

Well, back home in Zimbabwe we have our own set of dictators, whose incompetence and idiocy at being oppressors has become legendary.

I was just going through reports of the number of opposition, human rights, and labour activists who have been arrested by this regime – most particularly, over the past two decades – yet, in spite of the concerted harassment and persecution (such as unreasonably long periods in incarceration, after repeatedly being denied bail) were never convicted by the courts of any crimes.

As a matter of fact, activists as Hopewell Chin’ono were unsurprisingly pronounced by the courts of having being indicted on non-existent laws – whilst numerous others apprehended on undeniably weak and spurious charges.

One is forced to question the logic and reasoning capacity behind such clearly lame and brainless means of persecution and oppression?

Even the erstwhile Rhodesia regime knew better to arrest our nationalist heroes and heroines in accordance with prevailing laws – regardless of their repressive and segregatory nature.

When liberation fighters and their leaders were charged for subverting a constitutional government, or even treason, and terrorism – despite their very justifiable revolutionary activities, nonetheless indeed, they had violated the law.

Similarly, when the current president Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa was supposedly charged, convicted, and sentenced in 1965 to death (later commuted to ten years, due to his underage status) for his 1964 locomotive ‘bombing’ – the man, no matter the validity of his cause, had committed a prosecutable crime.

Yet, what type of a regime – even if wanting to be appear tough and ruthless against any dissent – would be so inept and foolish as to embarrass itself in the eyes of the world by arresting activists on charges based on laws that do not even exist?

Who, in their right mind, would dare prosecute someone who clearly never violated the indicted law – knowing fully well that there will never be a conviction?

Admittedly, such ridiculous actions may be aimed at instilling fear in these activists, and those who may dare follow suit – as a result of the incessant harassment and persecution.

However, the fact still remains – this is the lamest type of oppression, which betrays a regime deprived of any intellect.

I would never condone or praise any form of tyranny – but, there are some dictators who are a disgrace, as their ineptitude is so obvious for all to see.

© Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, author, and political commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp/Call: +263715667700 / +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936 / +263733399640, or email: [email protected]

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