Tag Archives: Robert Mugabe

Mugabe and Zimbabwe’s elections

Today, Zimbabweans are voting in presidential and parliamentary elections. It is true that the country is now on its knees and few would disagree that a radical change of direction is one of the few things that can turn things around. Withought a very significant change in government, I don’t see how that can happen.

Again, given the reality of Zimbabwe’s current political climate, there is no way this can be called a fair election. So far it is more fair than previous ones, but that’s not saying much. I don’t know… I hope it all goes well and there isn’t any violence.

At the end of the day, the Mugabe regime has shamed the entire continent. They have come to represent the very worst of Zimbabwe and Africa. Shame on you

Suppoting Obama or Clinton as opposed to Makoni or Tsvangirai

I don’t know about you, but I love politics, and even more than that, I love watching elections. The best elections are close ones and they don’t come much closer than this year’s Democratic race between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Baratunde Thurston has been involved in Obama’s campaign for a while now and I got this video off his website. It made me a little sad and a little jealous.

Zimbabwe has its very flawed presidential elections later on this month with Simba Makoni and Morgan Tsvangirai taking on Robert Mugabe. You won’t find many people wearing opposition nominees’ t-shirts or openly campaigning for them. There’s a sad lack of tolerance for different political views and very little respect for people’s right to choose their leaders. It’s such a pity. Things could, and should be so different.

Still, I look forward to the day that I can be involved in an election back home and not worry about who hears me supporting the candidate of my choice. One day…

Bye Bye Fidel

Are the winds of change in the air? Pervez Musharraf has lost the elections in Pakistan and Fidel Castro has indicated that he is to step down as Cuba’s leader. That’s a lot to have happen at more or less the same time.

I think Musharraf sabotaged his legacy by trying to stop the inevitable: his exit from power. He turned the whole affair into a painful bloody process and few will be sad to see him go. Castro on the other hand isn’t so easily dismissed.

He is loved by many in Latin America for the same reason that most African leaders still stick up for Robert Mugabe. Both stood up to Goliath. Both have taken on superpowers and told them to go jump in a lake, and off course onlookers have loved them from it. It’s easy to get caught up in both men’s rhetoric and be impressed by them until you look at the cost of their actions.

In both cases, ordinary citizens have paid the brunt of the consequences. A friend who recently visited Cuba said he felt like he had travelled back in time. He was appalled by the poverty there. Having said that, Cuba’s health care system is arguably better than that of the Americans. The same could be said of their education system. But was it worth it? Would not making peace with the United States have served his people better? And didn’t ruling with such an iron fist, for whatever reason take away from his message? 

Of Musharraf, Mugabe and Castro though, the only one with a chance of being remembered in a positive light is Castro. I wonder if the fact that he relinquished power voluntarily (sort off) has anything to do with it?