Mugabe Now at Bay

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Polscope with Eddy Odivwri    eddy.odivwri@thisdaylive.com 08053069356

The wild jubilations that greeted the final exit of former President Robert Gabriel Mugabe from the Zimbabwean saddle last Tuesday, was enough testimonial of how poorly the people of Zimbabwe regarded the 37 long years they had to endure the rule of one man.

The jubilations were thus an expression of great relief and reprieve from what had appeared like a political incubus.
For a long time, it had looked like Zimbabweans were in a jinxed-lock with Mugabe. He was Zimbabwe and Zimbabwe was him. Mugabe was suffused with a messianic complex. Somehow, he believed that unless he was in the saddle, Zimbabwe will not work.

And nobody seemed to be able to do anything about it. Not even the now lionised Zimbabwean parliamentarians, who have suddenly found their voice, all thanks to the military gentleman coupists.
Mugabe had reluctantly thrown in the towel last Tuesday when the parliament had begun the process of impeaching him.
He had earlier been sacked as the leader of the ZANU-PF, the political party that had been in control.
Perhaps, Mugabe would have even preyed longer on Zimbabwe, but for his mindless domestication of the nation’s political matrix

If he did not toy with the idea of replacing himself with his Lady Macbeth of a wife, he probably would have remained in office till he is 100 years, as he had once boasted.
But his wife, the graceless Grace Mugabe, 52, and 41 years younger than her husband, kept goading Mugabe to sojourn deeper and deeper into tyranny. Grace had believed that political power could be matrimonially (and sexually) transmitted.

She boasted with oracular certitude that whatever they (she and her husband) wanted from the Zimbabwean federation was theirs for the asking. You won’t blame her. Her husband is the oldest president in the world. He had presided over and determined the fate of Zimbabweans for 37 years. Power had become their inalienable lot. It was an infinite and unchallengeable political dogma. She once bluffed that even the corpse of Mugabe could stand and win elections in Zimbabwe. So she kicked and fired with the confidence of a marksman.

She had once boasted: “I might have a small fist. But when it comes to fighting, I will put stones inside to enlarge it. Do not doubt my capabilities”.
Like the Lady Macbeth that she was, she pushed her husband to not only sack his deputy, an old and trusted ally, Mr Emmerson Mnangagwa (mouthful name) but to work towards even eliminating him, all so the coast will be verily clear for her to launch in and ultimately succeed her husband. She has hardly denied her vaunting presidential ambition.

See what she said in 2014: “They say I want to be president. Why not? Am I not a Zimbabwean?”
Sadly, that move became her waterloo and albatross. It was evidently the last straw that broke the camel’s back.
She is no doubt, a methodical planner and strategist. It was in pursuit of building her profile up and early enough that she crookedly wangled her way to “earning”(?) a Ph.D in Sociology in less than a year. Only in Mugabe’s Zimbabawe!

Here was a typist in the State House, who began to flirt with a randy President Mugabe resulting in her having two sons for him, albeit secretly, while Mugabe was yet married to his late wife, Sally, who was then terminally ill.
Grace and Robert eventually married in 1996 in a lavish ceremony and thereafter had one more son.

The life graph of this erstwhile typist would peak as one of the most influential First ladies in Africa, but the connecting lines crashed to a villainous low last Tuesday when her husband resigned from office. And that is the end of the notorious Gucci Grace, so called because of her huge appetite for expensive shopping spree.

It is curious that she became a Ph.D holder just like that. No thanks to a pusillanimous Vice Chancellor at the University of Zimbabwe. What’s more, her thesis, unlike those of other Ph.D holders, was neither in the library stock nor has anybody ever sighted it. Africa!

Mnangagwa had to flee the country, for his dear life, to escape the lethal friendly fire directed at him. He explained that the security men attached to him had hinted him of plans to get him eliminated altogether. He had to run to save his life. From his exile, he pulled all the strings possible and the military decided to weigh in.

And that was the clincher as it marked the tipping point for the almighty Mugabe and his dis-Grace(d) wife.
Yesterday, Mnangagwa , 75, was sworn in as the new President of Zimbabwe, thus elevating him from the status of a villain to a hero.

It is bad enough that Mnangagwa is already 75, very much an old man; yet it will be more terrible for him and Zimbabweans if he decides to walk in the inglorious paths of Mugabe.
It is time to rebuild the walls of Zimbabwe. He needs all constructive hands on deck so his country men and women can have a new lease of life.

Under the deal between Mugabe and the military and the emerging government, Mugabe and his wife will be allowed a quiet stay in Zimbabwe at their luxurious “Blue Roof” residence.
There, Mugabe will be kept at bay and will rarely be seen or heard in the years ahead.
He turned down asylum offered by Zambia.
Now out of power, Africans, nay, the world will miss the mischievous and lewd jokes and quotes so often credited to Mugabe.

Mugabe’s Zimbabwe was one of the poorest economies of the world. He was stubborn and loathsome of the west. His determination to wrest the Zimbabwean land from the White farmers landed him and his country in rounds of economic sanctions from which the country refused to recover. The nation’s economy not only plummeted, it became so fluid that almost any currency was an acceptable legal tender.

The Zimbabwean dollar had suffered a sinking value erosion so much that a million Zim Dollar was probably just enough to buy a loaf of bread. But the old man little cared. He trudged on with annoying defiance, while the people groaned in hardship and squalor.
Mugabe is the last of a fading generation of African leaders, save Paul Biya of Cameroun, who are stung with the sit-tight mentality.
Biya should learn from the humiliation Mugabe has suffered.

Canticles
Anambra, PDP, and Other Matters

Do you know that President Mohammadu Buhari looks set for re-election in 2019?
2019? Buhari? How?

You can ask again. All you need do is read the horizon properly and it will dawn on you that Buhari is it, come 2019.
I don’t know what you are reading in the so-called horizon. The much I know is that many Nigerians have been shouting themselves hoarse that Buhari has offloaded unprecedented hardship on them.

That is just one side of the narrative of the minority. Look, did you notice that the All Progressives Congress (APC) came second in the just concluded Anambra guber election? Can’t you see APC is coming up in the South East?

Have you noticed also that the PDP crisis is intractable? Have you not seen that the party will continue to feud and bicker till and even after the 2019 elections? Look, I am telling you that before the elections in 2019, all the stumbling blocks between Buhari and the presidency would have all been cleared off. Even the budding economy would have waxed stronger in such a way that people will not even remember the hardship they had experienced.

Who told you? Do you know that the APC stock will soon be depleting?
Do you know many of the people in APC right now are just holding on for any possible benefit before they will jump off the APC ship?

Or have you not heard that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has defected from the APC and that he is likely to drag the Adamawa State governor along?

Don’t mind that come-and-chop politician. He is a typical politician constantly in search of what to benefit. As soon as one table dries up of what he needs, he moves to the next. Can you count the number of times he had decamped from PDP to APC and vice versa? How flirtatious can a politician be?

You should be charitable in your commentary. Do you know deeply supportive of the Buhari administration Atiku had been? Do you know how many vehicles he donated to the Buhari campaign organization at the time? Do you know how much cash he also donated? What has he got in return, two years after? Don’t you know how spitefully they have treated him?
Are you not aware of the trouble Intels is facing right now because there is a determination to teach Atiku a lesson or two?

Say the things you know. Do you know one of the spokesmen of Buhari was nominated by Atiku? Do you know how many ministerial slots he was given? Didn’t you hear the outburst of that Mama Taraba the other time? Just stay clear of politicians’ warfare.
Let me add that with or without Atiku, the PDP will not see the light day anymore. They are like Mugabe, their era is past.

Who would have thought that the PDP will drop to a distant third position in the Anambra guber polls of last Saturday, with all that Peter Obi stands for and did for the people of the state? Does it not tell you that the PDP market is over?

There is a strong feeling that there is a crackdown on politicians who could offer financial lifeline to the PDP because the ruling party knows that the main opposition party is broke and if it remains like that, it will hardly have the capacity to challenge it in the next election. And that is why there is a sudden clampdown on people like Anyim Pius Anyim, the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, as well as the attempt to rein in the likes of Ayo Oke and Mr Ekpeyong, former Directors General of NIA and DSS respectively.

Are you saying that Ekpeyong and Oke are also politicians that must be hacked down so as to cripple the PDP? Look, it is a sentiment like this that has kept Nigeria where we are. For God’s sake, anybody who has a case to answer should go forth and answer same and stop hiding under the thin sheet of politics.

Nobody is above the law. It is also talks like this that has stalled the investigation of Godswill Akpabio since September 2015 when the operatives of the DSS broke into some guest houses in the Akwa Ibom State House where some hard currencies and arms belonging to the Senate’s Minority Leader were recovered.

Till date, that matter has seemingly died. Nobody knows what happened to the case.
In the same way, the bribery case against
Hon Lawan Farouk seems jinxed. Mr Femi Otedola had alleged that Lawan had demanded bribe from him so his company (Forte Oil) will be exempted from indictment in a House of Reps investigation. Lawan who initially admitted committing the crime, suddenly changed his plea and since then, the Nigerian people have been in the dark on the progress of the case.

Or what shall we say about the recorded voice of the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, who was heard threatening to kill an INEC official if he failed to do as instructed.
When those cases are pursued to their logical conclusion, people like you will yell that it is political persecution

Look, all we are saying is that Nigeria is corrupt, we know. But the corrupt Nigerians are not just massed up in one political party. It cuts across. So the clampdown on such people should also cut across.

What are you implying? Were you not here when David Babachir Lawal was sacked and now to be prosecuted for the grass-cutting scandal? Was he not an APC chieftain?