Jonathan Moyo: Policy or succession contest?

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Jonathan Moyo: Policy or succession contest? Prof Moyo

The Herald

Prof Moyo

Prof Moyo

Reason Wafawarova On Monday
It has become abundantly clear that Zanu-PF Politburo and Higher Education Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo’s declared problem with Command Agriculture is not a policy matter and neither is it an initiative to bring about or promote accountability or transparency.

Rather, the contrived argument about alleged shortcomings of the agrarian initiative is simply a foolishly designed cover for an ill-conceived succession contest between Prof Moyo and his perceived enemies in an outfit he calls Lacoste, real or imagined.

It is common knowledge that Prof Moyo has neither moral legitimacy nor ethical standing to talk about accountability or transparency.

This is a man who not so long ago had no issues raiding a student fund so he could buy bicycles to impress village voters in his home area.

He is the same man who considers it intelligent innovation to hunt down hundreds of elephants in order to raise money to build a rural stadium in his home area.

The strange thing is that Prof Moyo’s succession battles are aimed at someone who seems not interested in engaging him in the dramatised fight.

Even stranger is Prof Moyo’s self-anointed posturing as the custodian of President Mugabe’s presidency.

The clownish triumvirate of Prof Moyo, Saviour Kasukuwere and Patrick Zhuwao derives so much joy in masquerading as the social media defence force of President Mugabe’s presidential tenure and candidacy for the 2018 election, pretending the respected political veteran is under some kind of threat.

The truth of the matter is that President Mugabe has a constitutional mandate to the presidency of the country, and he does not need protection from Prof Moyo and his two sidekicks.

The same goes for President Mugabe’s candidacy for 2018.

It can never be a matter of Prof Moyo’s bidding or campaigning, and it is simply preposterous for Prof Moyo and Kasukuwere to pretend to be championing the security of President Mugabe’s candidacy.

Only the party can do that, and the party has done exactly that, and continues to do so.

In an interview with The Standard, his now favourite mouthpiece after his departure from the Information Ministry, Prof Moyo was asked; “What exactly is your problem with Command Agriculture?”

He answered that the programme “has been hijacked and corrupted by successionists who are implementing it through a task force, headed by VP Mnangagwa.”

He goes on to anoint himself the custodian of Joseph Made’s feelings by bitterly complaining that the latter’s ministry has been “effectively sidelined.”

This is the same Prof Moyo who not so long ago hijacked a programme for high school kids and pretended to champion it as an invention of his own, when in fact the Education Ministry had been pursuing STEM well before Prof Moyo was appointed to run the sister Higher Education Ministry.

He knows too well about hijacking popular programmes.

When Prof Moyo was hijacking STEM for personal glory and attention, the affected ministry publicly cried foul, and rightfully so.

Surely if Minister Made feels that Command Agriculture has been hijacked from his ministry, he does not need the ugly interventions of Prof Moyo to express that view.

Made has a lot more experience in bureaucracy than Prof Moyo, and he is better placed to deal with such matters if ever they are to rise.

Prof Moyo raises unsubstantiated claims about alleged violation of Government procedure, as if stealing Zimdef funds in order to purchase bicycles intended to buy village votes is a legitimate Government procedure.

In a sound democracy, Prof Moyo publicly admitted misappropriation of funds would never go unpunished.

Well, the learned professor was at least honest enough to assert that his real worry is that Command Agriculture was “positioning and projecting VP Mnangagwa not only as a maize mesh, but as the anointed successor.”

It is a wonder how maize production is supposed to yield the anointing of successors in politics.

ZANU-PF does not have a Constitution that allows the anointing of successors, and neither does the Constitution of the country.

The presidency is a matter well covered in the Constitution, and Prof Moyo simply has no business pretending to play keeper to the gates of State House.

Prof Moyo rants tribalism each time he wants to reimburse himself for his own insecurity, sometimes portraying himself as a victim of some gigantic tribal witch-hunt.

He behaves like he is the only one with a tribe worth everyone’s attention.

A whole learned professor seeking a sense of belonging in a tribe is not to be admired in the 21st century.

Asked about evidence for his unhappiness over the reported success of Command Agriculture, Prof Moyo raises the argument that the scheme contributes only 30 percent of the harvest success story.

Prof Moyo admits there is a gigantic maize harvest success story in the country, and he chooses to deride a programme that contributes 30 percent to that success story; for the sole reason that he does not like the person who happens to be the chair of the programme.

For Prof Moyo the programme has to be vilified so that the person chairing it can be vilified in the process.

He pretends that there is no attention given to the Presidential Input Scheme, and obviously he hopes to create some kind of antagonism between the two schemes, precisely between the people running them.

Of course Prof Moyo thrives on creating fights, and that is not news.

Those in the public owned media houses know too well the sabre-rattling character of this talkative professor.

He accuses Finance and Economic Development Minister Patrick Chinamasa of being a “black Rhodesian,” whatever that means.

Some of us were born in Rhodesia, and it does not take liberation credentials for us to rid ourselves of the fact our birth certificates read Rhodesia.

Patrick Chinamasa is no more associated to Rhodesia than Prof Moyo is himself; and the truth is neither of them is a black Rhodesian by virtue of staying away from combat during the armed struggle.

Prof Moyo cannot accuse Minister Chinamasa of being a black Rhodesian because he did not join the liberation struggle when his peers were doing so without blaming his own father.

Prof Moyo’s father remained in Rhodesian Tjolotjolo when his peers were fighting for the liberation of this country.

He was much younger than Ndabaningi Sithole, Robert Mugabe, Joshua Nkomo and many others, in fact young enough to join the combatants.

He did not do that, and no one is wailing about it the way Prof Moyo does at Minister Chinamasa.

Talking about the resolve to liberate the country, Prof Moyo says he went to Mgagao Training Camp ready to liberate our colonised country once and for all, only to flee the camp after a single push onto the floor by someone who reckoned he was sleeping in the wrong bed.

What a brave teenage fighter!

Anyone with a military background will confess that such sissy behaviour is frowned upon in the military culture.

To qualify for military training in the rear harassment of new recruits was just normal during the armed struggle.

No one was 100 percent sure of the motive of people who crossed over into Mozambique or Zambia for military training, and many times the methods used to vet new recruits were far less than kind. I have a friend who upon being asked what name he was going to be using during the war said; “Clint Eastwood”.

He was thoroughly slapped in the face for naming himself after “the very people from whom we are fighting to free ourselves.”

Unlike Prof Moyo, Cde Krindi, as he was later known, did not flee the training camp, or wail as teenage Moyo did.

He braved it, trained, and was deployed to fight in Manicaland.

The statics provided by Prof Moyo to try and prove the shortcomings of Command Agriculture have been dealt with by others, but I must say they are essentially a contrived bunch of numbers meant to give a tint of intellectualism to a very primitive quarrel between Prof Moyo and enemies that have a vigorous psychological existence in the professor’s mind.

Prof Moyo always drags his dead father into the fray to enhance his nefarious arguments.

Honestly, the practice is deplorable.

He argues that because he has “refused to support a subversive succession scheme” this brings him to this position where a whole genocide is about to be performed on him.

Prof Moyo likes to anoint himself the custodian of collective Ndebele memory and feelings, and each time he gets himself in trouble he raises many issues about his perceived insecurity based on his ethnicity.

This coming from a once all-powerful Information Minister who haunted many journalists out of the country, and bullied the journalism fraternity into submission, is very telling.

My friend Eric Knight has many tales to tell about the ruthlessness of this man who claims to be a victim of intolerant tribalists each time he is on the back-foot.

Promising careers were summarily ended at ZBC just because Prof Moyo felt like ending them in the early 2000s.

Didn’t Prof Moyo accuse ZACC of pursuing a tribal agenda after being charged of syphoning Zimdef funds for purposes of vote buying?

That is how he shields himself from trouble.

President Mugabe has praised Command Agriculture as a beautiful programme, and Jonathan Moyo says he only supports that for as long as Mnangagwa is not the one in charge of the programme.

This is what he said; “Of course I agree with President Mugabe that Command Agriculture as formulated by Dr Grace Mugabe is truly beautiful,” and he adds, if “implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture.”

The question is how representative are Prof Moyo’s misgivings on Command Agriculture.

Apart from his social media admirers who believe he is doing a good job of destroying ZANU-PF from within, most of them genuine hard-core opposition activists; there is absolutely nothing on the ground to suggest there are people from Zimbabwe’s farming community who share Prof Moyo’s outrageous views on Command Agriculture.

People are just happy there is finally a good harvest, and the only person infuriated by this harvest is Jonathan Moyo, maybe with his me too sidekicks — Kasukuwere and Zhuwao.

President Mugabe is supposed to be the victim of the success of Command Agriculture, according to Moyo, but the President also wonders publicly what Moyo’s problem is with this “beautiful’ scheme.

Debate on policy is essential, but subverting the implementation of a government policy because one does not like the person appointed to lead the implementation is plain wrong. No sane member of any government does that, unless of course that person is an uncouth attention seeker so obsessed with making a name on social media the way mavericks like Donald Trump does things.

The only person that has been publicly throwing the names of Emerson Mnangangwa and Sydney Sekeremayi in the succession matrix is Jonathan Moyo, and yet he has the temerity to accuse other people of being “successionists,” whatever that means.

The truth of the matter is that Moyo has succession stuck all over in his famous head, beautifully and wonderfully made as it is; and it is only him and his two sidekicks that are breathing and dreaming succession.

For others there is a whole country to run, a whole bumper harvest to celebrate, a whole election to prepare for, and indeed a whole nation to serve.

Zimbabwe we are one and together we will overcome. It is homeland or death.

· Reason Wafawarova is a political writer based in SYDNEY, Australia.

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