FOR more than a decade and half, the EU and its allies, the US and Britain have been on our case, imposing sanctions to make life difficult for Zimbabweans with the hope that they would revolt against the Government of President Mugabe. Their efforts have, fortunately, been futile, as the people have continued to rally behind the Zanu-PF Government. Despite the illegal sanctions, Zimbabweans have continued to vote for Zanu-PF and President Mugabe with the British-sponsored opposition party, the MDC, finding the going tough every time it contested against Zanu-PF.
The EU, the US and Britain have tried all tricks in the book to effect regime change in Zimbabwe by making life unbearable for the people with no success at all and it is unthinkable for anyone in their right frame of mind to suggest that re-activating sanctions against the security sector would make Zimbabweans abandon Zanu-PF for the opposition.
We have been under sanctions for almost two decades now. Sanctions have become part of our life, part of our economy. The years we have lived under sanctions have hardened us to the extent that re-activating sanctions against the security sector or any other sector is simply a dog’s breakfast.
Our economy, although reeling from the effects of the illegal sanctions, has continued to sustain lives, helped largely by the creativity of our people and the Look East policy that we adopted. The economic collapse the EU and its allies hoped would bring down the Government has failed and instead mega business deals have been signed with China, Russia, Belarus, India and other friendly states.
It must be borne in mind that whatever the EU and its allies, the US and Britain strategise is inconsequential to the politics of Zimbabwe. Zimbabweans are not that daft, they have lived this far under sanctions and have come up with numerous sanctions-busting strategies and any threat of more sanctions will not have any effect on the people.
They are very much alive to the capability of the Government of President Mugabe and that while the illegal sanctions have continued to bite industry, the Government has not sat back on its laurels, but has continued to burn the midnight candle to ensure the economy does not collapse and indeed while problems can be found here and there, like in any other economy, the Government has performed admirably in tackling economic challenges.
The beauty about elections is that it is Zimbabweans who vote and not the EU or its allies. So any daydreaming by the British that they will hold sway in the 2018 general elections will remain a dream. It will do them a lot of good to wake up from that kind of dream. The re-activation of sanctions on the security sector will, in fact, heighten the people’s resolve to continue voting for Zanu-PF as it has become abundantly clear that the EU, the US, Britain and the MDC-T have no regard for the interests of the people, but only their narrow interests.
The fact that President Mugabe and Zanu- PF continue walloping opposition parties, including the MDC-T, in every election is clear testimony that Zimbabweans know the political party that butters their bread and no amount of interference by the West can make them blind to that fact.
Several research think tanks, including Afrobarometer, have produced surveys that show that President Mugabe and Zanu-PF are popular among the people. The popularity is premised on the numerous empowerment programmes that the Government continues to do for the people.
It is sheer madness for anyone to think that the Zanu-PF Government can be made to lose the 2018 general elections simply by re-activating sanctions on the security sector. Zimbabweans are much more enlightened than that!