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President must not squander goodwill

President Emmerson Mnangagwa is riding the wave of popularity after replacing the reviled Robert Mugabe after a military takeover last month.

The euphoria is understandable because Zimbabweans had struggled for years to remove the 93-year-old ruler through democratic means.

Mugabe had become very unpopular, especially after introducing his motor-mouth wife Grace into politics in 2014. Almost everyone wanted them out and Zimbabweans were prepared to overlook the way Mnangagwa came into power in the hope that he would get to work to revive the economy and return the country into democracy as he promised.

Even after unveiling a Cabinet largely composed of recycled deadwood and soldiers, many still insisted on giving him a chance.

This was despite the fact that Mnangagwa’s new team was not permissible in terms of the Constitution, as he had appointed more than five ministers from outside Parliament.

He duly corrected the anomaly yesterday by dropping Primary and Secondary Education minister Lazarus Dokora and making newly appointed ministers Christopher Mutsvangwa and Clever Nyathi special advisors.

Again Zimbabweans did not question why such a blunder was possible given that the president has an army of legal advisors around him.

The people were happy that Dokora, who is accused of arrogance and imposing a lot of unpopular changes on the school curriculum, was gone like Mugabe. They believed Mnangagwa had listened to the people.

This is how prepared Zimbabweans are to give Mnangagwa a chance to prove himself as a leader who listens and works for the people.

For him not to squander the goodwill, the president has to make sure that he makes good his promises to change the business as usual approach to business by the government.

Zimbabwe has been almost at a standstill since the army takeover on November 14 and the cost of that inactivity on the economy is massive.

Now that he has put in place a Cabinet, flawed as it is, the president has to start translating all those nice words into action and time is not on his side.

There is already a lot on his plate from anticipated electoral reforms to the alignment of a plethora of laws with the new constitution.

Many Zimbabweans also expect him to push reforms that will have an instant impact on the performance of the economy and end cash shortages.

His job has been made easier by a population that is ready for a new dispensation and it would be suicidal for him to squander the opportunity.

2 Responses to President must not squander goodwill

  1. Maonazvangu December 4, 2017 at 10:16 am #

    ”The people were happy that Dokora, who is accused of arrogance and imposing a lot of unpopular changes on the school curriculum, was gone like Mugabe. They believed Mnangagwa had listened to the people.”

    I deliberately insert the above quote from your article to correct some misconceptions regarding former minister Lazarus Dokora. I contend that he was not dropped for incompetency but so as to please certain constituencies in the faction riddled Zanu PF. What arrogance did he display and what unpopular changes did he impose? Remember that whatever Dokora did as a minister he had the full backing of the Cabinet, Mnangagwa included when he was still VP and Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs. Therefore, to acusse Dokora of arrogance and imposition of unpopular changes comes from people who do not know how government operates or to those who know it, but just want to score political points. Whatever Dokora did was was supported and funded by the then government and he could not have done it on his own since he was neither the Head of State not leader of government. From a neutral point of view, Dokora incurred the wrath of teachers by stopping their money-making ventures through endless extra lessons they wanted to conduct even for ECD children so that they would fleece hard pressed parents of their hard-earned money. Also, he had stopped the issue of entrance tests for Form pupils by which many a school, headmasters/mistresses as well as teachers made a lot of money. Imagine inviting 1000 students for the tests which each one paying $20,00 yet the school needed say only 150 children. Most of those celebrating Dokora’s demise want to continue corruptly earning a living through want he wanted to stop. Even the school fees issue had gone out of reasonable increments viz a viz what parents are earning. Look at the positives that had been brought about by the New Curriculum and those who are celebrating Dokora’s want all the money that had been invested to go down the drain all for naught??? I shudder at how Zimbabweans can be so fickle minded as to be blinded by political party factionalism than common sense. All the countries in SADC and Africa are quietly implementing what Dokora was trying to do and the sad part is that we the authors of this new curriculum thing. Mr Editor, please make some thorough research on this aspect as it seems you too are leading Zimbabweans down the drain education wise since your article seems celebratory in tone. Remember newspapers set the agenda and you are setting a very bad precedent on this one. I believe the President was misdirected in appointing and then firing Dokora because ha#e was at a critical stage of launching Phase 2 of the New Curriculum. Its my hope that the new minister (Mavhima) will pick off from where Mr Dokora left for the good of the country’s education as l am at a lose of words at what happens now to the educational sector since since independence, there hadn’t been no real change in our educational policies which in the long run would produce not only a nation of academics, but doers.

  2. bukhosik December 5, 2017 at 1:36 am #

    Be vigilant

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