Morgan Tsvangirai Reflections: The Quest For Power: Propping One’s Credentials

By Paidamoyo Muzulu

Blowing one’s trumpet is not the hallmark of good leadership be it in business or politics. However, In Zimbabwe it is the en vogue.

Zanu PF leaders including Robert Mugabe have over the years vaunted their liberation credentials to justify their continued unaccountability to the citizens.

We have on many occasions been reminded by the Zanu PF politicians that they ‘fought and died’ for this country hence earning the badge to rule us ad infitum.

Zimbabweans have become used to such long abuse by their liberators. However, the bug has become contagious and infected opposition politicians as well.

Embattled MDC-T president Morgan Tsvangirai on Monday in a length statement: Personal Reflections by Morgan Tsvangirai, the opposition leader fell into the same trap.

This statement gives us a rare insight into what Tsvangirai has been thinking after leading MDC-T to its worst electoral performance since its formation. MDC-T handed Mugabe the unimaginable two-thirds parliamentary majority less than 5 years after becoming the biggest party in the august House.

Tsvangirai touted his ‘democratic credentials’ to Zimbabweans.

He wrote: “For I too have borne the brunt of repression as a reward for my unstinting patriotism. I have been beaten up in a police station and faced serious trumped up charges, lost a loved one and endured the loss of so many cadres in this tortuous journey towards our democratic transformation.”

In simple terms, like Mugabe, Tsvangirai claims divine right to lead the opposition because ‘he has borne the brunt of state repression, was beaten up by police, faced trumped up treason charges (twice) and lost a wife’ in the struggle.

Tsvangirai like Mugabe also played on Zimbabweans’n short memories to the transgressions of their leaders by swiftly speak of his ills in passing.

At a personal level, he was not even sorry for his womanising and gallivanting to resorts on the ‘Legends of the Seas’ with his mistresses when the majority of Zimbabweans were literally starving.

He stated as a matter of fact: “I have since moved on and now share a commitment with my wife, Elizabeth. I have taken ownership of my responsibilities, which I continue to meet within my resources.”

Then somewhere in the middle of the long missive Tsvangirai concedes his election tactics were flawed. The MDC-T had misread the political scene and underestimated its opponents. Another fatal error in politics the leader made in 2013

He opined: “Put simply, we underestimated the level of subversion of the people’s will that had been planned. As we in the MDC have said, we had assumed that our sheer numbers were going to overwhelm the rigging plot. With the benefit of hindsight, we were wrong!”

And finally, Tsvangirai paints the tapestry of his dream for Zimbabweans like all politicians do. He paints like a realist. He speaks of the ideal, very imaginative and attractive yet short in detail.

For the last 15 years he has painted the same picture but never delved how this future will be achieved.

Talking of the times, I remember it’s the congress season. Zimbabwe deserves better. Struggle badges have ceased to appeal, comrades, we need real action and plans.