MDC congress grossly overshadowed by squabbles in ZANU-PF


The long-awaited congress of the Morgan Tsvangirai faction of the Movement for Democratic Change kicks off today but it has been reduced to almost a non-event.  The media, especially the private media that has backed the MDC before, has been totally engrossed with the internal “squabbles” in the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front which holds its congress in December.   The question is, as one writer asked, are the squabbles in ZANU-PF real or they were part of the party’s propaganda campaign to divert attention away from the MDC congress? Could Caitlin Kamba be right to say: “The figments of private press’s imagination that a revolt is imminent in ZANU PF reflect on the levels of desperation they have reached in their quest for a political revolution in Zimbabwe.  Whenever a political whirlwind brushes the ranks of ZANU-PF, like a Greek bird Phoenix, the revolutionary party is reborn and emerges stronger than ever. To those with a progressive political mindset, this marks the point of departure between ZANU-PF and other political parties.” These may be the words of a staunch ZANU-PF supporter or sympathiser, but picture this. 2013. Crucial elections are coming. The country has just approved a new, democratic constitution. Up comes Baba Jukwa, blasting ZANU-PF left, right and centre. No one pays attention to the opposition or its complaints about the uneven playing field. Elections are held. ZANU-PF wins nearly three-quarters of the seats. Mugabe wins 61 percent of the vote. Game over. 2014. MDC crucial congress in October. Grace Mugabe comes onto the political scene. There is media frenzy. She is not just going to be secretary for women’s league. She wants to take over from her husband. She blasts ministers. She blasts Vice-President Joice Mujuru. It looks like there is total chaos. October 30. There is a truce. The party calls for a commission of inquiry into the in-fighting. Bans all the divisive slogans like pasi ne gamatox and pasi nezvipfukuto.  October 31. MDC congress starts. Who has won? What was the fight about? Was it a real fight? Remember:  “Propaganda is as powerful as heroin; it surreptitiously dissolves all capacity to think.”


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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