By Melinda Chikukura-Teya and Elizabeth Sitotombe
CCC deputy spokesperson Gift Ostallos Siziba recently made headlines when he introduced former President of the US Barack Obama at the The Obama Foundation Democracy Forum in New York, hosted by the Obama Foundation.
On that podium, he did not miss the chance to slander the country of his birth.
“The year is 1993, 13 years after the nation of Zimbabwe was birthed from a long brutal war of liberation from Rhodesian colonial rule, four years after genocide against the Ndebele claimed the lives of over 20 000 people,” said Siziba to his Western handlers.
Siziba intentionally ignores reports by Amnesty International, Lawyers Committee for Human Rights New York, the CIA and the TRC of South Africa that called the period between 1980 and 1987 a ‘civil unrest’ and put deaths at below 1 500 on all sides.
It is no secret that the Gukurahundi issue has been hijacked and commercialised by regime change agents.
There have been big talks about mass graves in Matabeleland that have remained just that, talk.
That some have decided to capitalise on the issue to attract attention and funding is deplorable.
There is irrefutable evidence and documented biographies by the likes of former double agent Kevin Woods who openly admits they were working with Apartheid South Africa to destabilise Zimbabwe.
The aim was to create and arm a ‘rebel’ group as they had done with RENAMO’s Dhlakama in Mozambique and UNITA’s Savimbi in Angola.
The inscurrection was quelled, albeit with casualities on both ends.
A lot more is yet to be declassified but until then the silence will be used by individuals looking to score with the knowing and unknowing West.
President Mnangagwa even signed into law the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) Bill to operationalise the Commission set up in 2016 to bring closure on the unfortunate events that unfolded in the early days of our independence.
The Commission was set up to bring about healing and reconciliation in communities where the disturbances took place in Matabeleland and some parts of Midlands.
“This is the year I made my entrance into the world, born to a gardener and housemaid in the township of Tshabalala in Bulawayo, they named me Gift, calling forth my future from their dreams filled with hope for a better future,” Siziba goes on.
“Little did they know that those hopes and dreams would be future thorns in the flesh…….2008 brought with it an economic crisis that lay to rest any hopes of a better future as it ravaged the fortunes of ordinary Zimbabweans…… I decided that in spite of my youth, I would use my abilities, knowledge and decades of experience with poverty, repression, deplorable inhuman living conditions and evidence of a failed state became the fuel for my journey as an advocate for human rights and democracy.”
Local regime change agents like to use 2008’s global economic meltdown as a trump card to the unknowing public to incite fear.
It was a tough year for the country and the rest of the world.
A search on the internet will show that 2008 was a global recession.
Some economists named this period between December 2007 and June 2009 as ‘the most severe economic downturn since the Second World War occurred. According to the TheStreet,a financial magazine, “During this period, hundreds of banks failed, millions of homes went into foreclosure, and Americans lost over $14 trillion in net worth.
Unemployment levels swelled from 5% in 2007 to 10% in 2009…The Great Recession didn’t just affect the United States; all countries with rapid credit growth and large account deficits were impacted. Global trade nearly collapsed, declining by 15% between 2008 and 2009.
Global unemployment rose by 3 percent between 2007 and 2010 for an astounding 30 million total jobs lost.”
Here in Zimbabwe the opposition blames the ZANU PF Government for the global recession.
The 2008 recession nearly crippled developed nations, what more Zimbabwe that was under opposition and white farmer-recommended sanctions.
Sanctions and the global recession are what destroyed Siziba’s and millions of other Zimbabweans’ dreams.
Siziba misses the point that the people he condemns on the international stage fought a war from the kin he wants to please, to give him the freedom he has today and the land to sustain that victory.
After the Land Reform and Resettlement Programme of 2000, money was given to several individuals and organisations to fight in the corner of a few white farmers who did not want to share land with the landless black majority.
Among them was the founder of the MDC, now CCC, the late Morgan Tsvangirai.
In 2001 ZDERA was born out of the unholy alliance of opposition leaders and the West.
Because of ZDERA life became hard for everyone, including Siziba.
However the likes of Siziba began to sing for their supper as proved by his recent visit to New York where he was praised by Obama for the work he is doing in, “…safeguarding and improving democracy,” in Zimbabwe.
It is ironic that in that audience with Obama the Americans know that 2008 was a recession that even affected their own country but they will applaud and cheer on the ignorant sell-out on the podium eager to sell his own country.
Deep down Siziba’s handlers have no respect for him just as they hd no respect for Morgan Tsvangirai.
It is disconcerting to note that when Zimbabwe is making progress there are individuals and organisations bent on sabotaging that development, the proverbial fly in the ointment.
For 30 pieces of silver, they will frenziedly dance to their masters’ tune.
Enticed by the West, they are quick to sell out their own comrades, their mothers and their legacy.
They will tell sorry tall tales just to please their Western handlers.
Brush in hand they are ever ready to paint their own country with a very dark shade of black.
To those not in the know here is a bit about Siziba, a man well known for fighting democracy in Zimbabwe through dirty tactics in a bid to destabilise and unseat a constitutionally elected Government.
Gift Ostallos Siziba is the deputy spokesperson for the CCC and is Nelson Chamisa’s blue-eyed boy.
He is the former national secretary-general of the youth assembly of the MDC and a former ZINASU member with a history of clashing with the law.
He is also one of the founding members of #Tajamuka/Sesijikile campaign and former public relations officer for Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ).
Simply put, he has a knack for violence as evidenced by the company he keeps.
Siziba is one of the beneficiaries of the Obama Foundation and a Mandela Washington Fellow.
To the discerning, the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders is dedicated to grooming young people to push for regime change and American interests in their respective countries.
It is sponsored by the US Department of State, with funding provided by the US Government and administered by the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX).
Many of the country’s quislings have been coached there.
Siziba is Chamisa’s right hand-man who is slowly booting out spokesperson Fadzayi Mahere who was once the apple of the leader’s eye.
Sources within the party say there is tension between the two as they vie for Chamisa’s attention.
So bad is the ‘beef’ between the two that Siziba recently disrupted Mahere’s press conference, spilling the war into the public arena.
Well, again, a story for another day.
According to The Africa Report, Siziba stood by Chamisa at ‘critical moments’ during the battle for leadership in the MDC Alliance in 2018 and is the front for Chamisa’s business empire which he has built from fleecing thousands of gullible and naïve Zimbabweans.
Siziba, like many of his counterparts, has faked abduction, blaming it on the State to garner the attention of the West.
On October 26 2016, he claimed to have been abducted by State security agents and beaten up.
It turned out to be false.
In 2019, he claimed he was detained on trumped up charges of inciting public violence.
In June of this year, with CCC’S Gladys Hlatshwayo, he took a trip to Sweden to consult on how to form a CCC armed wing which would be called the Citizen Defenders.
Around the same time, he and other CCC activists took lessons on post-election destabilisation activities at the US Embassy in Harare.
In October, Siziba was at the United Nations General Assembly co-ordinating anti-Zimbabwe protests with the intention of embarrassing President Emmerson Mnangagwa and marketing the opposition party to interested bidders.
All these acts have been monumental flops and Siziba has been accused of squandering thousands of dollars meant for ‘prepaid’ protesters.
In the end, many of them did not bother to show up.
We wait to see how they will react post elections.
And the boy is not stopping.
But after all is said and done, Siziba, like his counterparts, will come back to a country that is forging ahead and succeeding, despite efforts to destabilise it.
They will witness the remarkable achievements made and being made by the Second Republic.
No doubt Zimbabwe will thrive despite youths like Siziba who instead of answering the call to contribute to development efforts continue to aid a rabid West bent on removing the revolutionary ZANU PF from power.
And fortunately with the Cabinet okaying the Patriotic Bill, chickens will soon come home to roost.