Obi Egbuna Jnr Simunye
ON Sunday September 17, 2017 exactly four days before President Mugabe addressed the 72nd United Nations General Assembly and to the delight of the African world, put US-EU imperialism on notice once again that African Revolutionary statesmanship is alive and well in Zimbabwe, our suffering and scattered masses had a chance to peruse the latest article by the Washington Post African Bureau Chief Mr Kevin Sieff titled “Why Are The Continent’s Most Prominent Legal Minds Wearing The Trappings of the Colonisers”?
Before addressing the content of Mr Sieff’s article let it be emphatically stated that Zimbabweans in particular and Africans in General must view this piece as the latest warning shot in the propaganda war against US-EU imperialism for the hearts and minds of the African millennials.
We are only one numerical year removed from the Director of Chatham House’s Africa Programme Mr Alex Vines openly acknowledging that up to this point President Mugabe and zanu-pf have been winning the propaganda war against the West, primarily because they have convinced the world that US-EU sanctions are the biggest threat and impediment to political stability not bad governance. To the surprise of many, Mr Vines’ analysis was wholeheartedly embraced by Ambassador Johnnie Carson the Snr Advisor to the US Institute of Peace and Albright Stonebridge Group, who was US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs during the first Obama Administration and US Ambassador to Zimbabwe during the second Clinton Administration. This open acknowledgment by Mr Vines was only overshadowed by Ambassador Carson telling the audience that he informed the Zimbabwean Government, if the Carter Centre would have been granted permission to observe the 2013 Zimbabwean Presidential and Parliamentary elections, he would have personally recommended to President Obama that the time had come to lift the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act of 2001.
Without going too much into how preposterous Ambassador Carson’s suggestion was, given Mr Carter’s failure to demand that each and every one of his successors sitting behind the desk at the Oval Office, honour the commitment he personally made to the Zimbabwean delegation at Lancaster House in 1979 led by President Mugabe and late Vice President and National Hero Joshua Nkomo, the obvious question, which Ambassador Carson is not politically or intellectually qualified to answer is based on Mr Carter’s negligence on the Zimbabwe question does he deserve the privilege of setting foot on the soil of a nation whose future he so blatantly compromised?
The lesson to be taken from this is the attitude of the US-EU imperialist Government Officials, Scribes, NGOs refuse to accept the defeat at the hands of President Mugabe and zanu-pf graciously, meaning with Presidential and Parliamentary elections right around the corner, the cowardly and opportunist attacks from our former colonisers will not only escalate but diversify.
The African nations strategically targeted in Mr Sieff’s piece are Zimbabwe, Kenya, Ghana, and Malawi, we must objectively admit Mr Sieff’s demonstrated that he has grasped Journalism 101, meaning the bare minimum, has the ability to state the obvious. Mr Sieff raises the point “It’s been 50 years since Britain left. Why are so many judges still wearing African wigs!
Before assuming his current position as the Washington Post Bureau Chief Mr Sieff was a reporter with the Brownsville Herald a Texas Newspaper, a trainee with the Financial Times, a Contributing Writer for The Texas Observer, A Reporter for the Washington Post, The Kabul Bureau Chief for the Washington Post in Afghanistan.
Because shock value and controversy are the intellectual cornerstones of US-EU imperialist media apparatus the tone and content of Mr Sieff’s piece hardly come as a surprise, however, he can begin by answering a rather important question, in the spirit of decolonisation why can’t the Washington Post find someone of African ancestry to serve as the African Bureau Chief? If Mr Sieff is so curious about what Africans put on the top of their heads, he shouldn’t have a problem posing this question to his bosses even if he already knows and agrees with their answer.
While Mr Sieff’s piece is child’s play intellectually speaking it provides us the ammunition not only to set the record straight, but put our former enslavers and colonisers on notice, that all feeble arguments aimed at mocking Mother Africa’s decolonisation process will be exposed and dismantled. Mr Sieff highlights the words of Tanzanian President John Magufuli, who referred to a free trade agreement with Europe a form of colonialism and highlights President Mugabe’s reference to US-EU Imperialism as “thieving colonialists”.
Mr Sieff rambling crusade eventually zeroes in on President Mugabe and zanu-pf exclusively by making the statement that “It is Zimbabwe that the wigs are most mystifying”, Mr Sieff poses the following question, why would a man, who stripped white farmers of their land, who rallied against the name of Victoria Falls, allow an archaic jurisdiction to remain in place? We thank Mr Sieff for showing that under the cloak of many a white liberal lurks a vindictive and white supremacist disposition in the soul of the majority of beneficiaries of colonialism and imperialism.
Based on this question Mr Sieff would be completely comfortable if President Mugabe and zanu-pf sent these colonial wigs to the British Embassy in Zimbabwe, in exchange for the land reclaimed from 4 500 commercial farmers of British and Rhodesian ancestry, it appears that gesture would bring young Mr Sieff to tears, especially since he referred to the land as the property of the colonial invaders and not the indigenous people of Zimbabwe. Mr Sieff more than likely prefers so-called African Americans fighting to take down statues of US Confederate General Robert E. Lee and Ku Klux Klan leader Nathan Forrest, instead of demanding full reparations from US-EU imperialism due to chattel slavery and settler colonialism.
Mr Sieff must realise that President Mugabe and all the African Revolutionary icons before him have never declared that the decolonisation process has no blemishes and contradictions, however, this does not give the beneficiaries of colonialism and imperialism the right to arrogantly pass judgment on our approach.
We are sure Mr Sieff is not aware that one of the projects of President Mugabe’s late first wife and national heroine Amai Sally Mugabe was to make African dress compulsory in Zimbabwe, while she was not successful 25 years after her death whenever an African woman adorns elegant African attire, they tell you today I dress like Amai Sally Mugabe.
If Mr Sieff wants to zero in on Zimbabwe’s legal minds, he should come to Zimbabwe and spend some time with Ambassador Dr Simbi Mubako the first African judge in Zimbabwe, who was President Mugabe’s legal advisor during the Lancaster House negotiations. Ambassador Mubako also defended late National Hero Josiah Magama Tongogara when he was falsely accused of assassinating the national hero and mastermind of the second Chimurenga Herbert Wilshire Chitepo and helped write Botswana’s Constitution.
If Mr Sieff has an obsession with the African legal mind, perhaps he should begin with focusing on the late Civil Rights icon and former US Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, who when helping write Kenya’s constitution after independence, made it illegal to claim land belonging to White Settlers without paying for it. Justice Marshall was quoted as saying “So I provided in my constitution that they could take the lands, but they had to pay you. And if they don’t give you the price you like, you could file an action in the highest court, I’m damn proud of that constitution I wrote”.
Justice Marshall also provided a dossier to the FBI on the former head of the Monroe North Carolina chapter of the NAACP, Robert Williams, who in 1961 began training so-called African Americans against a terrorist militia organised by the KKK. If Mr Sieff is our white liberal ally in our efforts to complete decolonisation, he can demonstrate this by not using his pen or column to divert attention away from our efforts to defend our sovereignty and integrity, even if it’s part of his job description.
- Obi Egbuna Jnr is the US Correspondent to The Herald and External Relations Officer of ZICUFA(Zimbabwe Cuba Friendship Association). His email is [email protected]