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By Editorial staff

Journalist


Africa must call out election thieves

The signs are not encouraging that Pretoria is going to do anything else other than recognise and legitimise these bent polls.


We should not have expected that the Zanu-PF kleptocracy running Zimbabwe would be willing to relinquish its hold on power and the opportunity to continue to loot their benighted country. After all, they have been in business since 1980 and for all but a handful of those years have had to rely on strong-arm tactics – ranging from harassment and intimidation to mass evictions and violence, as well as accusations of genocide in Matabeleland – to stay in office. ALSO READ: Zimbabwe opposition claims victory, contests president’s re-election Newly elected president Emmerson Mnangagwa would like to think the latest elections…

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We should not have expected that the Zanu-PF kleptocracy running Zimbabwe would be willing to relinquish its hold on power and the opportunity to continue to loot their benighted country.

After all, they have been in business since 1980 and for all but a handful of those years have had to rely on strong-arm tactics – ranging from harassment and intimidation to mass evictions and violence, as well as accusations of genocide in Matabeleland – to stay in office.

ALSO READ: Zimbabwe opposition claims victory, contests president’s re-election

Newly elected president Emmerson Mnangagwa would like to think the latest elections – which were so unfree and unfair that even the partisan Southern Africa Development Community was moved to call them exactly that – are proof that the country has proved its “detractors” wrong.

No, comrade, it has actually proved them spot on in their concern that dictatorship has snuffed out democracy in Zimbabwe. This might not have happened had South Africa not been sitting on its hands on the sidelines since the very first obviously stolen election in 2000.

Our then president, Thabo Mbeki, believed it was better to turn a blind eye to the outrages than have a fellow African country seemingly confirm the worst expectations of it.

ALSO READ: Zimbabwe elections called a ‘sham’

And the signs are not encouraging that Pretoria is going to do anything else other than recognise and legitimise these bent polls – even though this probably means even more Zimbabweans pouring across our borders in search of the better life Zanu-PF stole from them.

ANC secretary-general Fikile Mbalula, while claiming to be unbiased, has barely been able to contain his joy on social media at the triumph of Mnangagwa, implying media coverage has been biased in favour of the opposition Citizens Coalition for Change.

ALSO READ: Mnangagwa hails Zimbabwe’s ‘mature democracy’ after disputed re-election

If Africa does not call out election thieves, then the “big men” and dictators will laugh all the way to their Swiss banks.

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