By Wisdom Mumera
Listening to Zimbabwe`s Vice President Joyce Mujuru straining to defend herself from accusation of defending corrupt elements being caught all over the parastatal world, I could not help but surmise that politics is really a dirty game fought whilst the warriors are in pristine suits.
Whilst she knows the enemy she is fighting, the rigid etiquette of diplomacy and the battle styles of politics require that she states no names. That has ultimately led her to channel out some remarks that have not endeared her to the nation because they have come out hollow and empty of meaning to the rest of us.
They lack meaning because if we take them at face value it would appear that she is supporting the corrupt bellies that have been siphoning money from already frail parastatals. But we know she can do that.
The first lady of Zimbabwean politics is caught between unclear elements of the political voodoo world, and it was clear as she fumbled with semantics at a women’s meeting. She mused and strained, lashed out and pondered inwardly, throwing frail garments of clothing to cover herself with.
“There are some people who do investigative journalism and they do it better”.
She gave conspiracy theories.
“We should know that the people we are fighting having seen that they can’t defeat us directly can go and try to act as friends whilst sniping at us from up close”.
She cajoled for understanding.
“That’s what I meant”, followed by a ruminatory moment of cud-chewing the relayed thoughts.
When the news piece ultimately ended, with the producer having granted us the privilege of viewing two clips( from one day), of the VP struggling with straightening her tongue it was still not clear what she meant to say.
It was still fuzzy.
She had only managed to twist herself into a knot of another fancy theory so far fetched it makes one wonder if she really believes it herself.
Since their implementation sanctions have been the killer and the savior for many people. Taken as targeted measures or as full branded sanctions, they have strangled the local economy because the national GDP is ultimately tied to the workings of the West’s perceived enemy, ZANU (PF).
On the other hand they have also become a life-saving-shield raised by many to defend their failures in positions of power.
Embattled former ZBC Chief Executive Officer Happison Muchechetere offered the classic case in a letter to Permanent Secretary of Media George Charamba. Responding to why the commercialized company was failing to fulfill many of its obligations, the US$40 000 raking burly man explained that political machinations and sanctions were the cause.
However the Media Secretary saw behind the veil and rightly refused to swallow the weak argument.
It’s a tired argument that no longer warrants mentioning since sanctions have been here for so long that leaders are expected to have instituted measures that will work around them. The creation of measures to defend the corporate territory is the calling they have in occupying those specific positions of influence.
It’s not their articulation on how the adverse system is throttling them which warrants the high salaries they get, but the busting of those barriers.
For the VP to come up with a conspiracy that the latest corruption cases are the machinations of some enemy within our ranks boils down to be the tragically humorous summation of the scandal.
The argument doesn’t stick.
Others have hinted at some turf wars being fought in the ZANU PF camp but that’s a subject for more ponderous thoughts and conspiracies. The barest facts about the VP’s sentiments for now constitute a very weak case of judgment.
This is a simple case of thieving and corrupt big bellies that have been eating more than their fair share of the national cake. (It’s not even a cake, maybe chimodho, what with all the sewage flowing due to city council inefficiency, potholed roads, high unemployment and liquidity woes).
To see sanctions or America in these cases of corruption is the most far-fetched leap of faith that will daunt even the 12 year bleeding woman from the Bible or the Lord himself. Accountability on the leader’s part requires that she acknowledges where ill has flourished. Being Machiavelli and foraging for closets to sneak into instead of facing the real enemy will only further the social argument that all these men are ZANU corporates.
If it’s a turf war she is fighting by throwing out such vague and attritious statements, then to the rest of us not well versed on who is on which side, she will end up losing the iotas of trust that we graced her with as we banked on motherhood providing the safest arms even in politics.
Failure by ZANU (PF) to deal with these cases of corruption can only assist the floundering opposition MDC-T to regain some lost ground since every high office case has to have a political face. This time the nearest one is that of the ruling government which is led by ZANU (PF).
If the VP seems to be threatening the media for revealing corrupt elements ultimately that won’t augur well for the party in future contests.
For now the row continues on whether the VP meant what she said, or said what she meant. She has already stated that she was mis-channeled, flowed along a different channel from the one she intended to go along.
The papers are adamant that they were correct. She meant what she said. What she said is what she meant, and she said the wrong things.
Having tried to retract and redress, only to stumble and wade deeper into mire, the wisest step on her PR strategy now is to simply keep quiet and allow the healing winds of time to wash off the shocking sentences out of our minds.
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