Away from the obvious economic crisis, the ED era has seen the rearrangement of political identities, and a clear ideological crisis in ZanuPF. The opposition itself has been left suffering from the same, in as much as their own characterization by the regime is concerned.
Three issues have always defined our politics a) LAND ISSUE; b) Pan Africanism (read revolutionary parties solidarity); c) IMPERIALISM and NEO-COLONIALISM it has always been “easy” to tell where either the Opposition or the ruling ZanuPf “belonged” (due to propaganda).
After the chaotic abuse of the War Vets Compensation Act (1993), which led to the Chidyausiku Inquiry and the split of the War Vets Association, Mugabe did two things. Firstly, he passed the ill-thought and “once-off payment of Z$50,000 to each veteran and a Z$2,000 per month pension.
Around the same time, Mugabe wanted to maintain relations with the West (whites) and pretty much ignored the “Land question”. With the rise of the MDC, whose founding manifesto spoke to addressing the same, Mugabe did the second thing. He radicalized his Hunzvi ZWVA faction.
This was Mugabe’s response to the Land Question. It wasn’t a policy, let alone a planned government program. He simply got tired of mollycoddling to the West and succumbed to the demands of his war vets and forced the country into a partisan chaotic land grab exercise.
The program gave RG control over Chiefs and individual beneficiaries. Alliances naturally developed between white victims and the Opposition. The political crisis benefited Zanu-PF. RG became the Black Champion with the Opposition becoming a threat to the Blacks’ Land ownership.
As ZanuPF- West relations soiled further, ZanuPF became the torchbearer of “Pan Africanism”. In Africa, Pan Africanism basically is how often you can scold white people at AU or UN summits. At the same time, the MDC became a “stooge” of white interests by default.
Consequently, the Opposition became a victim of this political labelling. Whenever the Opposition or anyone outside ZanuPf is seen with a European, more so in Europe or America, they are accused of advancing Western interests and a reversal of the gains of independence.
Based on this historic deception, liberation movements have stood by each other and never shied away from defending one another. This solidarity has even resulted in turning regional institutions into tea parties. Heads of States periodically meet and do absolutely nothing.
Fast forward to 2020; a) it is ZanuPF that’s reversing the Land Reform program, with the Opposition defending it; b) it is ZanuPF mollycoddling to Western interests with the Opposition castigating it; c) it is ZanuPF attacking liberation movements for siding with the Opposition.
One then wonders… where to from now? Is ZanuPF now a threat to the same ideals and ethos they “stood” for? Is the Opposition being vindicated? Is the revolution safe under ZanuPF? Is the Land safe under the ZanuPf-led compensation and repossession drive?
This has been a strange year for so many reasons. It is without a doubt that the identity and ideological standing of ZanuPF has been irretrievably lost… after many years of lies and propaganda, ZanuPf has jumped out of its political closest. Will the citizens accept it?
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