Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan Tsvangirai today unveiled his state-of-the-nation address in which he said the return to legitimacy through a credible election is the only durable and acceptable answer to the crisis facing the country.
“It is for this reason that we have launched our Without Reforms, No elections campaign after noting that we needed to make this issue a priority ahead of the next election, whenever it is going to be held.
“There has been some misinformed criticism of our decision not to participate in the just-ended by-elections. It must be understood that we are looking at a far much bigger picture and ahead of the 2018 elections, we must address those issues that have affected the credibility of our elections since 2000,” he said.
The MDC leader said there were now “exciting political prospects on the horizon” and he was prepared to work with Zimbabweans of all shades and political colours to bring back the country to sanity.
“I see the true grand coalition not as the unity of individuals or leaders of political parties, but as a unity of Zimbabweans who possess shared values and convergence on the patriotic goal to take our country forward.
“Today, I promise Zimbabweans that we are on the brink of an exciting political moment and they will be see us as political leaders converging on those issues that matter most to us all Zimbabweans.
“It is on this score that I can tell you here that on the 11th of July in Harare, I will be joining other Zimbabweans from various political backgrounds at a prayer meeting for Itai Dzamara that is being organized by the church.”
Saturday, 27 June 2015
President Morgan Tsvangirai’s state of the nation address
We meet today on the 27th of June, a day that invokes blood-soaked memories of the unmitigated and State-sponsored violence we witnessed seven years ago.
Exactly seven years ago to the day and three months after I had defeated him in an election; President Mugabe contested against himself in a bloody election run-off and claimed he had won.
Four days ago, we buried Brighton Matimba, the MDC’s head of social welfare whose office was burdened with the catastrophe of 2008. May his soul rest in eternal peace.
I pulled out of the run-off after that violence which was meant to punish the people for exercising their democratic right to vote for me and the MDC. But that did not stop Mr. Mugabe from participating in a ridiculous so-called election as a sole candidate.
We also meet today, two years after the people’s vote was subverted in yet another stolen election on 31 July 2013, but the economic collapse and the national despondency after that monumental fraud are now so palpable and evident to all they cannot be hidden anymore. Our country faces an unprecedented catastrophic economic and social collapse.
They told us then, that it was an overwhelming victory for Zanu PF; but we can now all testify that the true victor in that election was evil and the hopelessness of the people that we see around us today.
On Friday, 24 January 2014, I presented a state of the nation address in which I pointed to a country fast accelerating towards a monumental implosion.
Today, as I rightly predicted, the meltdown is upon us while the party in government remains pre-occupied with ceaseless internal purges and diversionary succession wars while the nation teeters on the brink of total collapse.
I have travelled across the country and seen for myself the problems facing the people. I have seen the desperation on many faces, the poverty and despondency that has been brought about by the inevitable failure of ZANU(PF) to keep their empty promises which they continue to make to the people.
From the flood victims of Mahuwe in Mashonaland Central, to the suffering many in Tsholotsho, from Chipinge to Binga, from Mudzi to Kariba, I have met and spoken to humble ordinary men and women who have testified to an unbearable life under the incompetent leadership of this government.
Apart from the discouraging economic signs now visible everywhere, the demon of State sponsored violence is back as typified by the abduction more than 100 days ago of Itai Dzamara, who remains missing to this day.
After co-existence of the political parties in an inclusive government for four years, we thought the violent past had become another country.
We were wrong. The leopard has remained faithful to its spots.
And in open provocation to the peace-loving, hardworking people of this country, the army only last month rescinded on a threat to gun down millions of suffering vendors eking an honest living by selling their wares on the streets.
Instead of promising the nation food, stability, development, progress and jobs, the government promised gunpowder and violent removal to the innocent millions of our people who are only trying to feed their families.
On the few occasions that he is in the country nowadays, we wonder if the President takes time to even think about the monumental economic and social crisis engulfing the nation and the suffering that we the ordinary people are going through. It is evident that Mugabe does not care and if he does, he surely has a funny way of showing it! Our country is on autopilot to nowhere.
It is now 26 months since the elections in July 2013 brought to an end the inclusive government that had ushered in outstanding progress and provided respite to the people.
It is now obvious to all serious observers that the elections in 2013 were perhaps the most manipulated and rigged election in our short history.
After years of poor governance, corruption and soaring inflation, the inclusive government brought price and fiscal stability, direction and rapid economic recovery that brought hope back.
This was most clearly demonstrated by revenue to the State which expanded from just $280 million in 2008 to $4,3 billion in 2013.
Zimbabweans remember with nostalgia the good times of the MDC in government but it all seems like a long time ago, given the dispiriting reality now around us. After the purported victory of 2013, the economy lost no time in casting a vote of no confidence in the Zanu PF led government that had been imposed on the people. Within days, values on the stock market began to decline and are now barely half what they were in 2013 while more than $2 billion has fled our markets over the past two years.
In the banking sector, most indigenous banks, rotten with patronage , insider loans, poor management and lack of regulatory oversight by the Reserve Bank, have all but collapsed. So much for indeginization!
In the past two years, 40 per cent of our commercial banks have either been placed under curatorship or in liquidation with the loss of over $1 billion of the people’s savings and income.
The flight of capital, loss of cash balances at the banks and the liquidation of investments have resulted in a cash crunch that is paralyzing the private sector, exacerbating the closure of companies and inhibiting economic activity throughout the country.
These immediate problems have been further exacerbated by the resumption of demands for the transfer of assets to politically connected individuals and military officers under the guise of indigenization.
The continued onslaught on the rule of law and property rights, have reduced Foreign Direct Investment to new record lows.
As a consequence, it is our view that the national economy in fact contracted in 2014 and that this contraction in economic activity is accelerating by the day. This view is supported by the decline in national tax receipts to $3,8 billion in 2014 and the revised budget of $3,5 billion in 2015. Even this reduced estimate is now looking optimistic.
It seems as if Zanu PF has learnt nothing from its 35 years in power. To illustrate this lack of understanding and ignorance of economic principles, the unjustified and unbudgeted expenditures in 2014 and in 2015 have pushed the budget from the surplus achieved during each of the years of the MDC control of the fiscus, to over $1 billion in 2014 and a projected $1,5 billion in 2015.
This means that the government has incurred a totally unsustainable budget deficit of 23 per cent of expenditure in 2014 and it should be noted that this is approaching 31 per cent in 2015. This is totally unacceptable and violates the fundamental principles underlying the International Monetary Fund’s Staff Monitored Programme (SMP), negotiated under the inclusive government and signed by President Mugabe in 2013.
The consequences of this accelerating collapse of the economy are extremely grave; unemployment has reached record highs, disposable incomes have declined and the State is unable to meet its day to day needs for it to be effective in delivering services to the people.
In the midst of this crisis, Zimbabwe faces the worst food shortages since 1992 when extreme drought conditions forced massive food imports and 2008/9 and over 70 per cent of the population needed food aid from the international community.
This is exacerbated this year by the collapse of incomes and the inability of millions of Zimbabweans to meet their basic needs. We have heard recently that now the government is begging for food aid from a donor community which they insult on every turn. That is not only embarrassing, but indicates the level of desperation and incompetence of this government.
One of the things that make this situation even worse, is the continued denial of the regime of the fact that their land reform programme has been an unmitigated disaster for everyone.
That disaster is characterized by the continuous land invasions, new farmers without security or support, land owners dispossessed of billions of dollars of assets without compensation and the displacement of two million people who used to make a living on the farms and the need to import virtually all of our food.
This is compounded by an incompetent and bungling Minister of Agriculture who neither understands what is wrong nor has a clue as to how to make things work again. He has persistently overestimated local production volumes to please the President with lies and this year is no exception.
This crisis is further compounded by the decision last year to tell the World Food Programme that they were “no longer needed”. As a consequence, the international community (with the exception of China and Russia), who have in the past 7 years poured billions of dollars into Zimbabwe and provided food and health services and assistance with clean water supplies, is ill-prepared for yet another year of desperate humanitarian needs for Zimbabwe.
Because of corruption and incompetence, the Grain Marketing Board and the Ministry of Finance simply do not have the resources or the capacity to respond to our urgent needs. Simply to protect his pride, the President does not have the courage to declare a food emergency and ask those whom he disparages for help.
What we have heard in an unclear and muffled tone is Mugabe’s deputy, Emmerson Mnangagwa, belatedly asking for $300 million from development agencies to mitigate this disaster.
And as the nation stares another season of starvation, we want to warn against any partisan distribution of food to the people of Zimbabwe. We suspect that this partisan approach to food distribution will happen once more, putting millions of our people at the risk of starvation.
We urge the world and the development agencies to look out for this persistent Zanu PF behavior to deny citizens their right to food along partisan and political lines. We as the MDC will also deal with these problems as best we can and our supporters will be asserting their right to food just as all other deserving Zimbabweans.
Fellow Zimbabweans, there will be consequences for this multi-layered crisis currently facing the country. One of these, will be an increase in human flight as thousands of Zimbabwean economic migrants flee to countries who offer opportunities denied in their home country. The South Africans are not responsible for Xenophobia – leaders like Robert Mugabe are directly responsible and yet continue to deny this fact but are quick to blame others. That is typical.
Another consequence of the collapse of the economy is the massive growth in our informal business sector which they are now calling the “new economy” in order to once more, blame exogenous factors for the problems they have clearly created.
Today, only eight per cent of all adults are formally employed and therefore 92 per cent of our population depends on informal business activity for a living. We have about 700 000 small scale peasant farmers, 2,5 million street traders, 500 000 small scale miners, 180 000 cross border traders and 100 000 mini bus operators who, despite the continuous harassment by the police, must move the nation every day with amazing ingenuity and efficiency.
Today, more money circulates in this “shadow” economy than in the formal sector and it makes a huge contribution to our collective welfare and being albeit informal. Without this army of hard working small business persons and without remittances from the estimated five million Zimbabweans now living outside the country, things in the country would be very much worse. In fact, they would be disastrous!
This community of hardworking, innovative and enterprising people is a breeding ground for the next generation of successful miners, farmers and entrepreneurs. Far from recognizing their contribution, Zanu PF regards them as “urban rubbish” and “illegal miners” and is doing all they can to dislodge them from their places of work and sustenance.
Let me remove any doubt from your minds, any attempts by the regime to mount a second “Murambatsvina” will be strongly resisted and the MDC commits itself to the protection of all informal business persons, their inclusion in our economy and to making it possible for them to grow and prosper.
This crisis we face now is quite different from the collapse that took place from 1997 to 2008. This time we have deflation, not inflation, we have a hard currency and no shortages but no money with which to buy what is in the supermarkets. In 2008 the region was assisting us in our efforts to secure the fundamental changes we needed to get our beautiful, hard-working country back on its feet. Today, the region is ignoring our situation.
In 2008, the Fishmonger Group of 17 countries committed themselves to our stability and recovery to give us time to get our democracy back on track. Today, they have other priorities and are leaving us to deal with this new crisis on our own.
Rights and governance
The governance MDC yearns for is social democracy with policies underpinned by the sacrosanct values of justice, solidarity and freedom. Contrary to the Zanu PF philosophy, we cannot have policies centred only on distribution of limited assets at the expense of production. In the absence of economic production, there is nothing to distribute.
True and genuine empowerment speaks to a welfare State based on production anchored on sound policies that promote domestic and foreign investment. Any other empowerment policies in the absence of production fall far short of what the people expect and deserve.
The primitive emphasis on re-distribution of limited assets, rent seeking mentality with unjustified entitlement is what has brought this economy and this country to its knees. As a nation, we had done well by writing our own Constitution to infuse the values and culture under which the people said they want to be governed. This is the only governance culture which will spur our national development and prosperity.
It is now over two years since this country adopted a new national Constitution, achieved after 15 years of struggle and popular demands for change. Apart from the respite given to the people of this country, the only other real achievement of the GPA and the inclusive government was the negotiation and agreement on a new constitutional dispensation.
Yet two years down the line, the new Constitution has not been implemented properly by changing the 400 instruments of legislation that require amendment if we are to bring the new governance charter to life. Even the Speaker of Parliament last week complained about the lethargy by the Minister of Justice, who is also the Vice President, in seeing to it that Zimbabweans live under their new Constitution.
It must be noted that if this process is concluded in a responsible and legal way, most of the reforms enshrined in that Constitution would return Zimbabwe to sanity, economic recovery, freedom and democracy.
We in the MDC hold dear the issue of credible elections and reforms that would poise this country for growth and development. As I have said, most of the reforms are now in our Constitution.
As a party, we have made a firm commitment to withdraw from the electoral system until it is reformed along the lines envisaged in the GPA, signed under the auspices of SADC and the AU.
There is little purpose in submitting our supporters to elections when the whole system is so subverted and undemocratic. So firm are we in our adherence to the implementation of the Constitution and a new governance culture that we are demanding full compliance with the SADC norms and values for democratic activity. Nothing short of that will suffice. Until that is achieved to our satisfaction we can confidently promise our people that we will not participate in any election.
In the past year, virtually every political party except the MDC has disintegrated, leaving the people with neither leadership nor hope. We in the MDC committed ourselves in 1999 to changing our government democratically, within the law and without violence.
We have stuck to those principles and we have neither beaten one policeman nor broken a single window in the past 16 years while we ourselves have been beaten, abducted and killed.
I am not sure whether we can maintain that stance into the future.
One thing is for sure, the present situation is untenable and unacceptable and perhaps the time has come for us to take matters into our own hands and force the changes that are needed.
I know that there are many in Zanu PF today who share that sentiment that the future is indeed in our hands.
The Social services sector
Our social services sector, particularly health, education, water and sanitation services, is in limbo. Once the pride and marvel of our people, our schools and hospitals have collapsed under this government’s watch.
Despite our major success in the education sector, during the era of the inclusive government, there has been palpable decline in terms of quality and access since 2013. For example, the recently introduced examination fees for Grade 7 students are not consistent with the new Constitution of Zimbabwe, which regards access to basic education and health as rights and not as privileges.
On the health sector, our major referral hospitals such as Harare hospital, Parirenyatwa and Mpilo have become death chambers while morale remains low as witnessed by the recent job action by doctors and nurses.
Whereas during the era of the inclusive government we had created the Education Transition Fund (ETF) and the Health Transition Fund (HTF) together with development partners to engender progress, today the social services sector has collapsed under ZANU(PF) mismanagement.
Even our local authorities are broke and struggling to provide clean water and sanitation services.
Zanu PF’s populist decision to cancel all debts in the run up to the last election has come back to haunt our councils as all of them are owed hundreds of millions of dollars, with government itself being the biggest debtor to local authorities.
These debts were cancelled in one fell swoop and today no resident feels encouraged to pay rates and services as they feel that the Zanu PF government will bring back the ill-advised bonanza towards the 2018 election.
Our streets are teeming with millions of Zimbabweans seeking to earn a living in these harsh economic times characterized by job losses and an unemployment rate of 90 percent. As it becomes apparent that the Zanu PF election promise to create two million jobs was just an election gimmick, the streets have provided sanctuary to the many unemployed Zimbabweans seeking to earn a living.
This is a ticking time bomb and a threat to national stability. The only viable solution is to create employment as opposed to threatening vendors on our streets with gunpowder. They simply want jobs and not bullets!
With government legitimacy, policy clarity and policy consistency, we can begin to deal with some of these problems that we in the MDC effectively dealt with during our short stint in government.
The threat by the government to deploy soldiers to violently hound out vendors from the streets and the abduction of Itai Dzamara by State security agents have brought back the debate on the security of citizens in this country.
Today on 27th of June, the seventh anniversary of the violent clampdown on the people in 2008, we find ourselves in the ironic position where we are not safe in our own country. Zimbabweans are in the invidious position of being unsafe both in South Africa where others recently suffered xenophobic attacks, and even in their own country, where only last week innocent citizens in Gutu, Masvingo were violently driven out by soldiers from land they occupied in 2000.That is unacceptable.
Section 212 of our new Constitution is clear that the function of the Defence Forces is to protect Zimbabwe, its people, its national security and interests and its territorial integrity and to uphold this Constitution.
But the security forces, including the police, the intelligence services and even the prison services, have been made themselves become the biggest threats to the citizens of this country.
At Chikurubi Maximum security prison recently, police and prison officers shot and killed during several inmates following a riot over food. Many others were subsequently tortured and subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment in violation of the Constitutional rights of prisoners.
But it is the vicious assault of an honourable MP, Costa Machingauta, the assault of villagers and headmen in Hurungwe West and the abduction and disappearance of Dzamara that stick out like a sore thumb in the gross human rights abuses experienced this year alone.
I know that the security services themselves do not harbor any ill-intentions against their fellow citizens. They are a patriotic sector that is just abused by the State. In any case, most of them are under the age of 40 and have nothing to do with the power retention agenda of this government. Our soldiers, police officer and members of the intelligence services are professionals who want better working and living conditions like all of us. Left to their own desires, they would not harass anyone. They want decent salaries, better working conditions and decent uniforms. Like the rest of the citizenry, they also want a new Zimbabwe; a country where they would be able to prosper and to pursue and live their dreams.
We applaud the EU and other members and groups in the international community who have spoken out and made resolutions on the increasing human rights abuses in this country.
We urge the region, the continent and the broader international community not to abdicate their responsibility but to stand by the people of Zimbabwe in these trying times. They must speak out and make it clear to this brutal regime that the world will not stand by and watch while this country slides down this ruinous and violent path, negating and eroding all the positive signals that had been engendered by the inclusive government.
Poor and collapsed infrastructure has become the bane of this country. Roads, railways, airports and our ports of entry have failed to inspire confidence; neither do they showcase a country ready to do business nor do they spur investment, tourism and economic growth.
Run-down infrastructure, coupled with industry grappling with obsolete and outdated machinery and capital equipment have not helped matters in creating a truly business environment that reflects a modern economy of the 21st century.
The dire state of key enablers for economic growth such as the energy sector and ICTs tell their own sad story. There are no tangible steps being taken towards increasing power generation especially in the area of utilizing renewable energy. With 3 000 hours of sunshine per year, we ought by now to have harnessed this critical enabler for growth and development and improved upon the framework we in the MDC had laid out during our short stint in government.
Instead of harnessing ICTs as key enablers for growth and development, this government thinks ICTs are a threat and not an opportunity. We have legislation that allows for snooping into private communications and several censorship laws that discourage rather than encourage the use of ICTs. Again, we have seen the undoing of the liberal environment we in the MDC tried to create when were in charge of this portfolio during the inclusive government.
Only last week, we missed the deadline to migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting but the government has instead tried to mislead the nation that the deadline was partly met when in fact it was totally missed.
While other countries have moved to the era of e-health and e-learning by harnessing the use of ICTs for growth and development, this government has dismally failed to improve on what we did during our time in government.
My Vision and the Way forward
For some of us, the new Zimbabwe we have fought for all these years is anchored on a clear vision for our country.
In the meantime, before we realize that vision, there have to be short-term recovery measures to rescue this economy and save this country from falling over the precipice. The short-term interventions must deal with the problems of starvation and social services sub-sectors of health, education, water and sanitation.
There has to be a new culture of professionalism in our State institutions which have proven their inefficiency and lack of proper work ethic expected of State entities. This of course, is because they are mired in patronage at the expense of delivery.
I want to say that we in the MDC believe that there is no sanctions regime and our national predicament has nothing to do with the so-called sanctions that have become a convenient cover-up for Zanu PF failure and incompetence. They have become masters in continually denying that the problems we face today were mainly created by them and them alone.
There is a basis for international engagement in these short term measures to bring back the country on the rails. But that engagement and intervention must be conditional on Zimbabwe respecting values such as democracy and respect of the rights of the citizen which must mean the demand and insistence by the international community for the implementation of far –reaching reforms.
As I have said, most of these reforms and new governance culture are enshrined in the Constitution that Zimbabweans wrote for themselves but which this government is refusing to implement.
I envision a new country with a vibrant economy that meets the aspirations of all Zimbabweans underpinned by policy consistency, growth and prosperity for all.
In the new Zimbabwe, I see a great nation rising from the ashes of Zanu PF misrule. I see the realization of our promise for a better future for our children and our great grandchildren in a land full of happiness, abundance and the inalienable right for all of us to pursue our ambitions without limit.
I see the possibility of reconciliation of all peoples regardless of race, tribe, gender or political affiliation; a nation working together in resolving its problems.
I envision a Zimbabwe with a new ethos, where people live in peaceful co-existence regardless of their cultural, ethnic, racial, religious or political differences.
I envision a Zimbabwe where all can live up to their full potential. Given our traumatic past, we must learn to tolerate and reconcile with each other; to draw a line in the sand and say never, never again should any citizen be slaughtered on ethnic, racial, political or any other grounds for that matter.
We must be an inclusive, united society that is ready to swim or sink together, where diversity is celebrated rather than punished.
It is the celebration of our differences that will ultimately make our democracy hold.
In the new Zimbabwe, there will be no compromise on the dignity of every citizen, which, thankfully, is now enshrined in our Constitution.
All citizens must enjoy the true meaning of life by being treated equally by government and all State institutions. The equality and dignity of all citizens will be the cornerstone upon which our democracy will be built in the new Zimbabwe.
We aspire for a Zimbabwe characterized by economic prosperity, equity with notable increases of GDP and individual income levels.
I envision a country that uses modern technologies to accelerate productivity through strategic investment partnerships in the agricultural, manufacturing and mining sectors; productivity that will ultimately benefit the ordinary citizen.
I yearn for a new Zimbabwe with a modernized transport infrastructure that includes the resuscitation of the competitiveness of our national airline. We need to invest in upgrading our airports to promote commerce, trade and tourism.
I see a new Zimbabwe where the participation of women and the youth in mainstream economic activities is guaranteed and encouraged.
We aspire for a new nation with an accountable government; a country where a prosperous and inclusive economy prevails underpinned by the rule of law, political stability, policy consistency and predictability.
We must build a corrupt-free Zimbabwe with a government that is at the forefront of aggressively tackling systemic graft and dismantling the rise of unjust scales.
An efficient public service is the cornerstone of an efficient government. There is need in the new society we envisage to de-politicize the public service; to harness efficiencies and new competences as well as implementing institutional transformation to prepare public institutions with the onerous role to efficiently serve the people of Zimbabwe.
Efficient social service delivery will engender happiness among our citizens by ensuring the provision of affordable and qualitative clean water, affordable housing, healthcare and education across the nation.
We strongly believe in the sacred commitment to our liberation war and democratic struggle objectives and honour all of our fallen heroes and heroines who paid the ultimate price for us to be free from oppression of man by man.
I pledge that all our fallen heroes and heroines will one day be fully recognized as the champions of our country’s important struggles. We pledge to always celebrate and honour them, and to respond to the welfare needs of their families in a sustainable manner.
The return to legitimacy through a credible election is the only durable and acceptable answer to the crisis facing the country.
It is for this reason that we have launched our Without Reforms, No elections campaign after noting that we needed to make this issue a priority ahead of the next election, whenever it is going to be held.
There has been some misinformed criticism of our decision not to participate in the just-ended by-elections. It must be understood that we are looking at a far much bigger picture and ahead of the 2018 elections, we must address those issues that have affected the credibility of our elections since 2000.
There has been convergence around the issue of non-participation from most players in the opposition party circles, including even those who only a few months ago were in the top echelons of Zanu PF.
They have come out in the open to laud our decision not to legitimize this charade masquerading as legitimate elections.
That convergence means that for once, the majority of Zimbabweans are united on the one key issue which is to ensure that the next election is not only truly free, fair but credible as well. We must begin to address, once and for all, the contentious issue of a disputed legitimacy which is the root cause of our current national crisis.
I want to tell Zimbabweans today, that our convergence on non-participation must mean that there are exciting political prospects on the horizon.
I as Morgan Tsvangirai, and the party I lead are prepared to work with Zimbabweans of all shades and political colours to bring back the country to sanity.
I see the true grand coalition not as the unity of individuals or leaders of political parties, but as a unity of Zimbabweans who possess shared values and convergence on the patriotic goal to take our country forward.
Today, I promise Zimbabweans that we are on the brink of an exciting political moment and they will be see us as political leaders converging on those issues that matter most to us all Zimbabweans.
It is on this score that I can tell you here that on the 11th of July in Harare, I will be joining other Zimbabweans from various political backgrounds at a prayer meeting for Itai Dzamara that is being organized by the church.
In the previous elections, the people of Zimbabwe have won the election but lost the results and we pledge in our diversity to continue to insist on the implementation of both the Constitution and the reforms agreed under the auspices of SADC and the African Union.
We urge SADC and the rest of Africa not to be by-standers on the insistence of these reforms that we as political parties agreed under their watch.
Twice in the past 10 months, I have written to heads of State of SADC and Africa on these issues but I will be directly engaging them in due course. The people’s victory has been stolen from us for far too long and it is time to draw a line in the sand and be the captains of our destiny.
We can no longer give that responsibility to others or to ZANU(PF) who have unashamedly shown us throughout the years that they neither care nor are they competent in taking Zimbabwe forward.
I have always said that at a personal level, I am greatly inspired by the story of David as a major lesson to victims of theft to salvage their stolen legacy and their pick-pocketed treasure.
After the enemy had stolen everything from him, as the enemy of freedom did to the people of this country on July 31, 2013, David does not resign to fate, as some people expected us to do.
According to the book of Samuel, David asks the Lord whether it would be possible for him to recover his property; his treasure which the enemy had stolen from him. The Lord says to David: “Pursue, for you shall surely overtake and recover all.”
And so the people of Zimbabwe shall pursue the one who stole their destiny on July 31, 2013 and in the previous national elections. They shall certainly overtake and recover all.
The people’s will is sovereign and no thief can steal God’s time.
The people’s sweet victory and the realization of the national dream can only be postponed or delayed but never abandoned.
We may not recover the lives which were lost in the senseless violence over the years and we may not be able to recover the lost time. But we shall definitely pursue and recover the lost dignity and the pride of this nation and its people.
Only then can those who have died in our war of liberation and democratic struggles of our nation rest in peace with the satisfaction that we have completed their quest for freedom and peace for all.
Yes, we owe it to those heroes and heroines and to future generations to deliver a free Zimbabwe well within our lifetime.
It is not impossible!
I thank you