Sunday, 24 April 2016

Mugabe pays war vets' children's fees but are they smart enough to know this is NOT the cure. By Wilbert Mukori

Ignorance, especially the type that leads one to act against one’s own best interests, has to be one of the worst curses to afflict an individual, society and, worst of all, a nation. We are a cursed nation, how else can one explain the self-debasing ignorance shown by the war vets, for example.



“We have a total of 43 000 (war veterans’) children who benefit from our US$6 million budget per term, of those children about 22 000 forms have so far been submitted and processed,” boosted the Secretary for Welfare Services for War Veterans, Walter Tapfumaneyi.



The money was only paid after the war vets had complained to Mugabe about the economic hardships they were facing. Ever since the country attained her independence in 1980, the country has followed a downward path to economic decline whose gradient has grown steeper and steeper. After the first two decades of mismanagement and corruption under this Mugabe tyrannical rule, it was finally clear to the majority of Zimbabweans that Zanu PF will never deliver mass prosperity.



Mugabe was not willing to dismantle the corrupt and oppressive political system he has set up since it was the one that kept him and Zanu PF in power. The only way the nation was ever going to change course from the disastrous path it was on was for the people to reclaim their democratic right to have a meaningful say in the governance of the country and have free, fair and credible elections. If there is one segment of Zimbabwe society that has done the most to resist democratic change in the last 20 years it is the war vets!



When Mugabe lost the 1999 referendum on the new constitution he felt his iron-grip on political power slipping he needed four things to happen to restore his autocratic grip on power:


  • He needed an issue for the nation to focus its attention on taking it away from his pathetic record of mass poverty induced by gross mismanagement and rampant corruption and murderous tyranny as exemplified by Gukurahundi murderers – the land issue.
  • With the worsen economic situation there was very little wealth left to dole away to his wasteful but ever demanding Zanu PF cronies – the white owned farms was the only resource left to dole away.
  • To silence the growing public demand for democratic change including free and fair elections Mugabe knew he would need to dig deep and deny the people their freedoms and basic human rights even more ruthless than ever. What he needed was an excuse to justify his use of violence against all those opposed to continued rule by his imposed de facto one party dictatorship. First, he declared war marked by the wanton violence against the white farmers and their workers; burning properties, beating people and no fewer than 30 people were murdered. The violence was unjustified since none of the white farmers ever tried to resist the evictions.
    The gratuitous violence against the white farmers always spread to engulf all blacks who dared oppose Mugabe’s no-regime change agenda under the pretext those people were sell-out working in cahoots with the West who were seeking regime change to undermine Zanu PF’s land reform.
    The gratuitous violence against the opposition and the ordinary people assumed its monstrous proportion in the 2008 elections when it was impossible to hide its real political intention. “What was achieved by the bullet cannot be undone by a ballot!” boosted Mugabe at the time. Millions of people were beaten and/or raped and over 500 were murdered in the orgy of violence that year.
  • Mugabe had corrupted the Police, Army and CIO, as with all the other State institution, to turn a blind-eye to the lawlessness and violence by Zanu PF members designed to further the party’s no-regime change agenda. With the country’s economic decline Mugabe lost the party’s traditional foot-soldiers in the form of overzealous Zanu PF women and youth members; the penny had finally dropped as they too realized that the country need political change to stop the economic rot. Mugabe needed new foot-soldiers to carry out the low level harassment, intimidation, beating, etc. of the civilian population and the war vets step up to do this dirty work with zeal.
    After 20 years of doing nothing war vets like Jabulani Sibanda were only too pleased to be granted a political role even if it was a demeaning one, completely at odds with what freedom fighters stood for!
    However, the primary reason why many war vets spearheaded the violent farm invasions and the equally violent denial of the people’s freedoms and basic human rights these last 20 years was economic; they were affected by the growing poverty just as badly as everyone else and they thought Mugabe was offering them the sure path to the elusive prosperity. They thought the Z$50 000 cash payment, a pension, government promise to pay war vets’ children’s fees, etc. were the first down payment of many more to come. By giving the regime their blind loyalty even to the extent of denying the masses their freedoms and basic rights the war vets were doing their bit to ensure Zanu PF remained in power to make the future payments!
    What the war vets failed to understand 20 years ago because of their ignorance is that the nation’s economic decline was caused by mismanagement and corruption and as long as Zanu PF remained in power these were set to get worse and so too will the economic decline. The Z$ 50 000, etc. were painkillers and not the cure. It was not therefore in the war vets own economic interest as well as that of the nation to retain the corrupt and incompetent Mugabe regime in power under this false pretence that the country’s elections are about land and nothing else.
    Although it was self-evident that the war vets were not bowled over by promise to pay the school fees much less the other wishy-washy promises Mugabe made at the 7 April meeting with the war vets. What Mugabe would be hoping is that the school fees payment would be enough to buy the war vets’ blind loyalty for the time being.
    What the war vets must get into their thick heads is that it is not the continued reign of Zanu PF which is at issue here but the very survival of the nation. The economic meltdown and political chaos in the country is socially and politically unsustainable; we need cure and democratic reforms are that cure. If 20 years ago the nation’s leg was broken and then today gangrene has set in; the war vets forced the nation to take painkillers back then the nation cannot go a long with this foolishness today!  


  1. During the war of independence Smith had his blacks fighting alongside him to keep the white racist regime in power. The people called these black soldiers “Zvimbwasungata” (Rabies diseased dogs); a totally appropriate name given these blacks were after the very lives of their own fellow blacks who were fighting for the freedom, liberty, human dignity of all blacks including these dogs! The freedom fighters were fighting for no reward and the rabies dogs were fighting for the dubious honour of wear-ing the Police uniform and calling the white man boss!

    I never thought I would live to see even one Zimbabwean earn the name zvimbwasungata and yet what would one call Jabulani Sibanda and his mindless war vet thugs! Where is the honour and dignity in harassing, intimidating, beating and even murdering innocent people whose only crime is that they have dared to demand the freedom, liberty and human dignity that independence promised but President Mugabe and Zanu PF have denied them.

    The war vets are living in abject poverty just like the millions of other Zimbabweans; it is only their mind boggling stupidity that has stopped them realizing that the Mugabe dictatorship will never bring prosperity but only mass poverty. The regime is paying the war vets’ children’s school fees but even the war vets would not deny the quality of education these children are getting is far below that they would have received from Ian Smith.

    The nation should be slamming down rogue former freedom fighters like Sibanda who have brought the names of war vets into disrepute and yet our Mugabe, Mujuru and now Tsvangirai are fighting each other to have these mad dogs join their party.

    Meanwhile morons like Professor Jonathan Moyo have been writing volumes in praise of the corrupt, incompetent and murderous tyranny of this Zanu PF dictatorship. Moyo says many of his relatives were murdered by the regime during Gukurahundi, for example; that did not stop him work for the tyrant for the sake of the ministerial car and the singular honour of being called the “a weevil and devil incarnate” by the boss.

    Of course we are a cursed nation; we have become a nation of zvimbwasungata all working feverishly for our own national demise!

    1. I have never understood how anyone would freely take up arms against someone who is fighting for your greater interests as did the blacks who fought the civil war on the side of the whites. Calling them Zvimbwasungata was spot-on, the name showed they are more dogs than humans!

      The willingness by some war vets to be used and abused by Zanu PF to deny the people's freedoms and human rights showed we still had the s we still had the same selfish sell-out mentality of zvimbwasungata. For all their posturing as freedom fighters, men and women of courage and conviction those war vets have shown that deep down they are men and women of little conviction. Indeed, they do not have any common sense and they are easily fooled!

      What the nation must not do now is allow itself be held hostage by these modern day zvimbwasungata!

  2. @ silungish

    What is there to be jealous about? If the regime is paying the war vets' children's fees because it a constitutional obligation then why has the regime not paid a penny in the period July 2013 to December 2015?

    If Zanu PF cares about the rule of law then why has the party failed to hold free, fair and credible elections, murdered over 30 000 in its 36 years in power, etc.

    Wilbert is not complaining that the government is assisting war vets, he is asking the war vets to open their eyes and see that the assistance they are being given is a cheap bribe to string them along. Zanu PF want the war vets to continue denying the people their freedoms and rights just as Smith used his black soldiers, "zvimbwasungata" to help him maintain his racist regime.

    The war vets thought that Mugabe will make them rich but instead they have continued to sink deeper and deeper into poverty. The nation's economic prosperity will depend on good government. Zanu PF may be the party of the revolution but that does not change the fact that it is also corrupt and incompetent and its continued stay in power will drag the nation deeper and deeper into economic hell. If the war vets think paying the fees will somehow save them from poverty then they are indeed breathtakingly stupid!

  3. Zimbabwe cannot afford another rigged elections in 2018 and therefore no stone will be left unturned to ensure the democratic reforms are implemented and elections are free, fair and credible. Even Mugabe or Mnangagwa would deny that Zanu PF will never win free and fair elections. It follows then that if Mnangagwa is ever to be president then he must do so now because he will never win free and fair elections.

  4. Zanu-PF registered a colossal victory in the Guruve South parliamentary by-election on Saturday after its candidate Cde Patrick Dutiro swooped 19 153 votes against National Constitutional Assembly candidate, Mr Simbarashe Mutsvene, who got 818 votes.

    Is Guruve not a no-go area for the opposition? Would the people there have received any food aid if they had voted for the opposition? How many people were beaten, raped and killed in 2008 to "teach" the locals a lesson of the dan-gers of supporting the opposition!

    Zimbabwe has yet to hold free and fair elections and until the far reaching democratic reforms are implemented this will remain a pipedream!