From Trojan Nickel Mine to Chatham House

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THE recent confessions by Morgan Tsvangirai about how much he misses the good old times of colonial Rhodesia seem to have stunned most of us.
Gasping for breath, we ask: are these the confessions of the proverbial village idiot whose ranting and raving after quaffing one or two cupfuls of kachasu always leaves the whole neighbourhood on tenterhooks?
Judging from the copious comments which his ‘beer utterances’ have elicited from all and sundry, it is obvious Tsvangirai has touched a raw nerve, making us wonder for the first time whether or not we know who this man really is!
There are several reasons why such a seemingly casual moment of nostalgia expressed by the former Prime Minister of Zimbabwe deserves additional attention from all of us.
First: Why does Tsvangirai decide to lie blatantly about the size of his colonial pay packet when we all know he was a mere tea-boy–cum-waiter at Trojan Nickel Mine?
Is this lie simply an index of his small mind and its pettiness or a petulant outburst calculated to spite us because we did not vote for him in 2013?
Come to think of it while others were busy fighting Rhodesia, he was busy swilling beers, perhaps as an honorary white settler of sorts.
Or is he referring to those many half-empty beer bottles of yesteryear often abandoned by his drunken white masters then and which he used to collect as a waiter and subsequently do full justice to their left-over contents?
Second: If Tsvangirai believes that swilling vast quantities of cheap beer is the benchmark by which we can judge the good and bad times of colonial times, we are also entitled to conclude that this ‘beer thing’ is a metaphor expressing the kind of limited vision which he had crafted for the whole nation and which he would be striving to implement had we installed him at State House in 2013.
Tsvangirai has been at the helm of the MDC-T for years, preaching the gospel of change and all he can give us by way of a national vision is access to cheap beer, as if to say, there is not much that exists between his two ears.
Third: And more ominous is the fact that in 2008 Tsvangirai almost made it to State House on the strength of some of our votes.
What does that political statement say about our capacity to assess, to discern and to judge the true nature of people who aspire to be our leaders?
The fact that Tsvangirai had professors and lawyers such as Welshman Ncube, Lovemore Madhuku, Tendai Biti, Obert Gutu, eating from his palm, speaks volumes about how easy it is to mislead a gullible and mis-educated generation.
Almost half the nation got mesmerised by the political antics of a former tea-boy who, had we elected him, would not have had the slightest idea where he would take the country, except backwards to Rhodesia.
Had Tsvangirai won the 2008 elections Zimbabweans would be busy by now apologising to the West for having fought the liberation struggle at all, for having taken back our land and for daring to indigenise our economy!
Even the remains of Ian Smith would have been reburied right on top of the sacred hill at National Heroes Acre.
It also turns out that Tsvangirai’s remark about his love for cheap Rhodesian beer confirms the serious import of his now infamous statement requesting our liberators to return the country back to where they got it — Rhodesia!
The tragedy here is that Tsvangirai’s limited vision of taking back the country to Rhodesia is not an exceptional and an isolated one in Africa!
We recall how General Joseph Ankrah, assisted by the CIA, toppled Kwame Nkrumah in 1966, but did not know where to take Ghana afterwards.
All he could do was to take Ghana backwards to a semi-colonial outpost!
We also recall how Mobutu Sese Seko, with the assistance of the West, especially Belgians and Americans, removed Patrice Lumumba from power and murdered him but, again, he had not the slightest idea on how to develop the DRC.
All he could do, apart from appeasing his gargantuan appetite for sex and for all things Western, was to take the country backwards to deplorable levels of resource exploitation by the same West.
Fourth: And this is crucial — Zimbabweans need to read as many lessons as possible from Tsvangirai’s character and role in politics if they are to make sense at all and benefit from the more than 14 years of MDC induced suffering.
And one of these is for us to learn how to separate self-seeking political charlatans from serious and progressive leaders; how to separate among ourselves those African leaders earmarked to become Western puppets from those genuinely committed to the development of Africa; how to identify and separate original and creative minds from those playboys among us simply out there hunting for personal fortunes and pleasure using the political arena!
Fifth: The mere fact that Tsvangirai has been invited to speak at Chatham House in Britain should not confuse anyone at all.
We need to recall that the MDC-T will never be the same again after the 2013 elections in which the people of Zimbabwe voted with clarity and conviction.
However the British are not done yet with Tsvangirai as Zimbabweans are! They still need him to explain how he lost and where he thinks he went wrong and what his suggestions are for the way forward to betray Africa again!
The difference between Zimbabwe and Britain vis-a-vis Tsvangirai is that the British still need to identify more puppets using him as an unwanted model not only among us but from all over Africa to look after their so-called national interests and this exercise requires taking of copious notes, footnotes, endnotes and references etc — an exercise which Chatham House has specialised on.
It also requires many levels of analyses and predictions about envisaged returns on specific puppet investments in Africa hence the exit interview scheduled for Tsvangirai at Chatham House!
Identifying stooges and puppets and promoting them to leadership positions in Africa has become a Western tradition and a kind of industry of some sort, but one which thrives on opposition politics of Africa!

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