HomeOpinion & AnalysisMuckraker: ‘Totem-less aliens’ raise bootlicking bar

Muckraker: ‘Totem-less aliens’ raise bootlicking bar

THE Lake Chivero invaders got the publicity they deserved last weekend. Mounting an illegal occupation of chalets, restaurants, a caravan site and the internationally-renowned Kuimba Shiri bird park, 200 Zanu PF activists from Zvimba occupied the lakeshore residences and businesses claiming to be fulfilling President Mugabe’s indigenisation project. 

Youth minister Saviour Kasukuwere and ZTA CEO Karikoga Kaseke tried to distance themselves from this anarchy. But by then it was too late. The damage had been done.
Tourism minister Walter Mzembi in Spain had just launched Zimbabwe’s new brand, “World of Wonders”. But delegates to the event, having read the papers, asked him if this was the same country he had been talking about?
That is what happens when lawlessness runs rampant. Who promoted this illegal occupation in the first place? We know what their agenda was. We just want the names.
There was nothing remotely “swift” or “decisive” about the authorities’ response as they claimed.
The leaders of the gang were described by Kaseke as “dignified individuals”, who claimed to be acting against racism.
Whatever Kasukuwere or Kaseke might claim, this was the ugly face of empowerment; helping yourself to other people’s property. It is called theft. Fortunately the world was able to share our view of this assault.

A reader mailed us to say he was pleasantly surprised to see a picture of Hu Jintao and a grinning President Obama together with Michelle Obama under the caption “Heavyweights”, in last Friday’s edition of the Herald.
“I thought the official line would have dictated that the Herald should have been screaming, what is Cde Hu doing, hobnobbing with imperialists?”
Our reader makes the obvious point that “if our friends in the East have the sense to look West why is it a sin for us to even consider mentioning the West in good light?
“Why should we continue to exclusively look East? What kind of a tantrum is it that lasts more than 10 years? And come to think of it why should one man’s tantrum form the basis of national policy?”

The president’s whereabouts was the subject of a disinformation campaign last weekend. We had heard that he was due back on Sunday, January 23. NewsDay carried the story which emanated from a politburo member. But dozens of influential people were certain he was already back on the Thursday and were trying to convince us that this was the case. We declined to take the bait. But what prompted the pressure to mislead our readers? We can only assume it was designed to wrong-foot his detractors.
When Mugabe did at last land in Harare on Sunday, he put an end to rumours of ill-health by revealing that he had been holidaying with his family in Singapore. The Herald’s Tendai Mugabe thought we should know that Singapore is “near Hong Kong where his daughter Bona is pursuing university studies”.
The president said he had not even been in Malaysia.
Muckraker’s information is that Mugabe’s plane landed in Kuala Lumpur on December 31, then diverted with passengers to Singapore where its VIPs disembarked (or deplaned as the Americans say) and then returned to KL where it resumed its scheduled flight. Several connections were missed as a result.

If the press speculated about Malaysia being the destination, that’s perhaps because it so often has been in the past. Have we forgotten Langkawi so soon? And those photo ops with Mahathir? And were reports of the Malaysian urologist who often accompanies the president all part of the Western campaign of “lies”?
Anyway, we are delighted to hear that the president is in robust health. But rumours about his health are the product of a rumour mill starved of accurate information.
When Obama or David Cameron go on holiday — or even Vladimir Putin — they provide the press with a photo opportunity on condition that they make themselves scarce thereafter.
Silvio Berlusconi chooses Sardinia — a rocky island — so the pesky press can’t film his um, er “visitors”!
It is to be hoped that Mugabe benefited from his Singapore sojourn to see how a small country with no natural resources became a success story almost overnight as a result of wise governance. Singapore is today a wealthy multi-racial society with a keen respect for its British founder, Sir Stamford Raffles, whose statue occupies pride of place in downtown Singapore.
Former prime minister Lee Kuan Yew who was educated at Cambridge and presided over the country’s dramatic growth may have been a stickler for discipline (dropping litter is a major offence). But he marshalled his people into a modern, investor-friendly, financial hub.One of his first success stories was the transformation in the 1970s of national airline, Singapore Airlines, into a flagship business. It is about the same age as Air Zimbabwe. But try flying Singapore Airlines and see the difference!
Did Mugabe notice any of this? Somehow we doubt it.

Did you know when buying the little Zimbabwe flags on sale at the traffic lights that you are contributing to Zanu PF’s election campaign? The Sunday Mail helpfully revealed this over the weekend.
“The Zimbabwe flag is being embraced by all and sundry,” an editorial told us. “There is a reawakening. Something is happening to our national consciousness. Something is happening to our national identity.”
Something was happening at the Sunday Mail, that’s for sure. It should have kept a lid on this disclosure. Sales could plummet when people find out where the campaign comes from. And is it a good idea for one party to wrap itself in the flag? Shouldn’t the flag belong to all Zimbabweans?
We wonder what “awakening” is referred to. All we have heard about is internecine warfare as ambitious personalities fight it out for turf.

And the other thing we noticed on Sunday was an assault on the roadmap to elections which President Zuma has been working hard with the Zimbabwe negotiators to bring to fulfilment.
“This roadmap nonsense,” Jonathan Moyo scoffed, “which has been conveniently if not mischievously associated with Sadc and…President Jacob Zuma is totally unacceptable… not only because it is borrowed from a tired American concept that has failed in the Middle East but also because it seeks to subvert our national sovereignty enshrined in our constitution.”
“The point must be made,” Moyo asserted, “and made in the strongest possible way, and those with ears must hear, that no election in Zimbabwe will be set and conducted on the basis of any roadmap.”
So there you have it. A kick in the teeth for Zuma!

Meanwhile, we wonder what business people like Joseph Kanyekanye are thinking when Emmerson Mnangagwa advertises his damaging Stalinist proposal to make business leaders of foreign-based companies denounce sanctions on TV.
Kanyekanye has said he opposes sanctions. So how can he and his outfit, the CZI, allow this dangerous demagoguery to pass unremarked? What sort of business organisation is it that remains silent in the face of threats of this sort against its members? The CZI doesn’t deserve to have any members.
Zanu PF’s leaders should get it into their thick heads that most people in this country hold them responsible for sanctions. The CZI didn’t impose sanctions, nor did the MDC. Zanu PF’s misrule did.

Muckraker has always regarded the Law Society as a competent and professional body.
But a full page advert taken out in the press recently would suggest the description of “clumsy and careless”.
First of all, unforgivably, they managed to misspell the first name of the Chief Justice. Then they said “retaliates” when they meant “reiterates”.
The LSZ needs to get itself a proof reader!
It does raise a useful point that hasn’t been commented upon. Some 82% of civil appeals noted in 2010 are not yet ready for set-down. As the LSZ points out, this scenario is not condonable as delay in execution of justice may at times end in denial of a basic right of access to justice.”
Muckraker would simply ask: what are those responsible for hearing cases doing that is occupying most of their time?

Is it not ironic that “sell-outs” and “totem-less aliens” are the ones now singing Zanu PF’s praises. President Mugabe, in a fit of pique during the 2000 parliamentary election made these disparaging comments referring to Mbare residents.
However, it seems that Zanu PF has seen the error of its ways and is now using the Mbare Chimurenga Choir which has released its second album accompanied by a video of the track titled Mahwindi with the aim of “encouraging oneness in the country”.
Mahwindi is the group’s second album following Nyatsoteerera which according to ZBC “set a new standard in the production of Chimurenga music videos”.
They did set a new standard in bootlicking and mediocrity which many a musician –– even Last Tambaoga Chiyangwa –– will find hard to match.
The track Simukai Tiverengane, we were told by the Herald, urges people to take stock of one another, urging everyone to be visible when the time to be counted by the shepherd, in this case President Mugabe, comes.
We liked the bit about the shepherd and his flock. They are all sheep aren’t they? And we understand what the counting involves. Baaa!
We could only commiserate with ZTV Sunday Edition anchors Marion Shaba and Juliet Muzenda who tried their best to portray their enthusiasm by bobbing their heads when the video was played. It is very likely that it was more out of duty than pleasure since the powers that be at Pockets Hill last year read the riot act to presenters who did not show acceptable levels of enthusiasm in spewing out propaganda.

NewsDay reports that former Zanu PF Masvingo provincial Information and publicity secretary Kudzai Mbudzi has rejoined the party after a brief foray in opposition politics. Mbudzi was suspended from Zanu PF in 2007 after sharply criticising President Mugabe and his old guard over failure to institute leadership renewal in the revolutionary party.
“It  is   important  to  realise  the  reasons why I left in the first place,” Mbudzi said. “I was agitating for leadership renewal, organisational transformation and regeneration in the party.
“Ultimately, I saw that in spite of my own thinking as an individual, that same thinking must be subordinated to majority thinking.”
No guesses will be required over what might have prompted Mbudzi to return to the feeding trough. It reminds us of the Zanu PF official, identified as Mudarikwa who according to WikiLeaks likened Zanu PF to a troop of baboons incessantly fighting among themselves but coming together to face external threats.
Here is the clincher from Mbudzi: “The party is now making up on the same reasons which had caused me to leave. Organisational transformation and renewal in Zanu PF is now a fact, so I decided to come back.”
Is he talking about the same party we know? Mugabe and his old guard are still there and so are the same failed policies and yet by some freak of nature Mbudzi sees “organisational transformation and renewal.”
Where?

Finally, analysts are commenting on the role of social media in the Tunisian revolution. Now that it has spread to Egypt should we call it Fezbook?

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