Until Robert Mugabe almost single-handedly transformed Zimbabwe into a basket case, it had been Africa’s jewel in the crown. And, as neighbours such as Mozambique and Zambia forge ahead in what could be Africa’s century, I see no happy future for the country under the continuing despotic, destructive rule of his ruling elite.
Mugabe and, above all, the political-military governing cabal around him will continue to loot the country. Hundreds of millions of dollars in revenues from Marange’s blood diamonds will line their pockets as has been happening these past few years. Instead of going to the Zimbabwe Treasury, the enormous resources of Marange were ruthlessly deployed to steal and rig the recent election in direct breach of the Kimberley Process designed under an international treaty to ensure a legal and transparent diamond trade.
Sadly, the opposition MDC allowed itself to be naively manipulated into imagining that election could be free and fair. And, having first been sucked into coalition to save the economy from meltdown after the previous stolen election, and then been suckered again by Mugabe as he had done to Joshua Nkomo’s ZAPU before, it is not clear what role the MDC now has.
Nor, with SADC neighbours like South Africa complicit in the whole travesty – which has witnessed the prostitution of the original Zimbawean freedom struggle – does the MDC or indeed the Zimbabwean people have the allies they need.
The African countries like Ghana that are succeeding today have good or improving governance and skills. Revenues from their resources are invested in infrastructure, jobs, growth and public services.
Does anybody seriously think this will happen now, under still more of the same failed policies, corruption and despotism in Zimbabwe?