Felex Share Senior Reporter
Former President Mr Robert Mugabe should dump his politics of entitlement and egotism and emulate other former Statesmen who believe in change with continuity, political analysts have said.
The analysts said Mr Mugabe should take a leaf from former South African President Cde Jacob Zuma who over the weekend volunteered to campaign for ANC ahead of 2019 general elections.
Cde Zuma resigned last month in the face of a no-confidence vote supported by his own party, a similar exit to that of Mr Mugabe.
South African media announced over the weekend that despite being in retirement, the former SA president will campaign for ANC in his home province of KwaZulu-Natal, adding that he was ready to be redeployed by the party.
ANC elections head and former police minister Fikile Mbalula said Cde Zuma told ANC that he was volunteering his assistance:
“In his retirement . . . has availed himself to support and to be ready to be deployed by the ANC . . . It’s not a question that he is deployed in KwaZulu-Natal; he resides there. So this weekend he prefers to be working in KwaZulu-Natal‚ particularly in and around the areas of Nkandla‚ where he actually resides,” Mbalula told Business Day.
Cde Zuma’s gesture contrasts sharply with Mr Mugabe whose “selfishness” has seen him anointing Brigadier-General Ambrose Mutinhiri (Retired) to lead the opposition National Patriotic Front (NPF), a new political outfit composed of members of the G40 cabal in a bid to divide the Zanu-PF vote.
The cabal was expelled from Zanu-PF last December, while Mr Mugabe resigned after being recalled by his party, Zanu-PF.
NPF has indicated that it will contest the harmonised elections this year.
Political analyst Mr Alexander Rusero yesterday said unlike Zuma, Mr Mugabe was self-centred.
“We are dealing with two protagonists here with one being a former Statesman who is grateful of his contribution as a person and civil servant occupying the highest office in South Africa,” he said.
“Then we are also dealing with another protagonist who has a dangerous feeling of entitlement who thought that Zimbabwe belongs to him and him only, someone who could not imagine there will come a certain time he could no longer be on the reign. Zuma’s statement represents politics of continuity while what Mugabe is doing is a dangerous gimmick and dangerous politics of entitlement of saying things cannot continue as long as I am not involved.”
Mr Rusero added: “It is unfortunate that for the first time he is blundering, reading a wrong political script because at the end of the day he is busy fighting something he created and the history and legacy he is part of. These are double standards. He is reading politics from a script of frustration and desperation not sober sense which requires rationality and decency.”
Another political analyst Mr Goodwine Mureriwa said Mr Mugabe’s sentiments should not hold Zimbabwe at ransom.
“Zuma has been ousted and he understands the circumstances that resulted in his ouster while here we have an adamant and selfish former President who believes Zanu-PF and Zimbabwe revolves around himself and his clan,” he said.
“What Zuma has done is a wakeup call to Mugabe that if he has always been standing for the wishes of the people and the people have spoken that they want a new leadership, he should support the will of the people and lead by example.”
Tanzania-based political analyst Mr Tafadzwa Mugwadi weighed in: “Zuma has demonstrated the astounding consciousness and virtues of a principled leader who is not self-centric. This strikes a difference with Mugabe who thinks at 94, he can destabilise Zanu-PF and scuttle the victory of President Mnangagwa. Unfortunately, he was a hero turned villain and no progress minded Zimbabwean cares to listen to sour grapes from a disgraced nonagenarian. What boggles the mind however is that Zimbabweans endured 37 years of his rule but he is already too tired of being ruled in three months. He needs to take a leaf from Zuma because Zanu-PF gave Mugabe everything during his time and hobnobbing with NPF and fallen G4O cabal is certainly not what he owes to the revolutionary party.”
In recalling Mr Mugabe, Zanu-PF resolved that the former leader was losing control of the party to his wife Mrs Grace Mugabe and the G40 cabal.
The cabal had also become instrumental in making executive decisions.