By Prof Changamire
The anchor gave a short history of his guest on the show, I was unperturbed and stared blankly at my computer screen as the form and shape of a lady I knew came into focus, I didn’t need to be told that she was Joyce Mujuru the former vice president of Zimbabwe, being featured on DW’s Conflict Zone.
I watched with interest as Joyce Mujuru squarely laid the blame on her former principal Robert Mugabe on the Gukarahundi atrocities of the 80s, where over 20 000 were killed and thousands more were maimed and beaten by the North Korean trained 5th Brigade. She rightly claims that she was the minister responsible for Women’s Affairs during that period, she also rightly points out that she was only a VP and junior member of government during the 2008-2009 atrocities. This is a high sounding nothing. It is preposterous for a cabinet minister to feign ignorance over the carnage of the 80s, it is ridiculous for a VP to say she was a junior member of government, the office of the VP is the second most powerful office in the land.
During her tenure in the Zanu PF government, as a senior official, she is accountable (like everyone in government during that time) for Operation Murambatsvina of 2005 which displaced over 700 000, The 2008-9 election violence. She is tacitly or otherwise responsible for creating an atmosphere of angst, distress and despondency in Zimbabwe. Sokwanele, a non-governmental organisation gathered specifics on more than 1,300 political attacks ranging from the wanton destruction of property to rancorous murders, many were forced to flee into neighbouring countries or internally displaced. She is the same person who made Mashonaland Central a cantonment in 2008 and virtually cordoned off the area from all opposition parties, which was and still is in contravention of the right to be protected from physical harm due to political affiliation. Therefore, it is morally apprehensible for a perpetrator to ask of the victims to move on! There are people who suffered literally and subtly at her hands, and she can’t dictate the pace at which the victims move on.
It is of no benefit to the generality of Zimbabweans for Zanu Pf to win the 2018 election, this is no excuse however to welcome anyone and everything that purports to be opposed to the incumbent regime. It is Mujuru’s inconsistency that flummox me, one time she says she is sorry and she was responsible the next she totally denies everything. Mujuru must understand that the questions posed to her, are a direct consequence of her actions or lack thereof. Her callous history revisionism and defensive mode is harmful.
Mujuru remained an active participant, for 3 years in a government that she claims killed her husband, until she was kicked out kicking and screaming. Is It not only legitimate that people question her sincerity in solving Zimbabwe’s problems? In December 2013 she lashed out at journalists who, reported the profligacy at parastatals aka known as salary gate, – not to mention the Econet license issue when she was Telecoms minister- labelling the scribes as people who wanted to destroy Zimbabwe. How can one destroy Zimbabwe or any other country for that matter by exposing corruption in public enterprises?
If it was a lapse in judgement for her staying in government that robbed and victimised its own people for 34 years, a government that made it clear that all matters relating to the nation must only be discussed through Zanu PF’s viewpoint. If for 10 years she was a VP who didn’t know what other branches of government were doing. I then wonder what this speaks of her competence.
She still doesn’t make sense having for starters tossed out senior cadres in the then Zimbabwe People First. Can a person of such edgy emotions be trusted with the cutting edge tensions that characterise an electorate that is desperate for change. Is she strong enough to be trusted with the public purse? As an aspiring head of state she and or her supporters cannot and should not paint as mischievous the conversational framework that questions, discusses or analyse her actions!