opinionBy Beatrice Mharapara
London — I am so disappointed with Western media coverage of our elections. Western journalists went into Zimbabwe with one objective in mind that President Mugabe loses the elections while Morgan Tsvangirai wins.
The journalists are supposed to be objective and evenhanded but they are reporting only MDC-T activities and interviewing only MDC-T supporters ignoring Zanu-PF supporters. They have not reported one good thing about President Mugabe. If this is what they call democracy, I do not agree with it; I am now going to say my mind and educate them on Zimbabwean politics because they do not know the situation in depth apart from what they hear from the opposition they are supporting.
I am dismayed with my fellow Zimbabweans whom I have seen on the TV demonstrating at the Zimbabwe Embassy here in London against President Mugabe and the Government. And this, more than anything else, has prompted me to write this article. I did not want to see or hear people talking bad about President Mugabe calling him a tyrant.
What strikes me is that some of our people have a short memory. They have forgotten how we won our independence and how we suffered for it. We won our independence through President Mugabe's leadership but now Tsvangirai, who was busy working in Bindura, tries to belittle the President. Tsvangirai even says he wants to send President Mugabe to The Hague for what he terms "crimes against humanity."
When Ian Smith was in power he killed so many people in the rural areas. This I speak from experience because my own brother (Farai Vatema -- his Chimurenga name) was killed by Smith during the ceasefire period when the freedom fighters (called terrorists by Smith) were in the assembly points waiting for talks to be finalised at Lancaster House in London. Rhodesian soldiers bombed thousands of freedom fighters. What about the thousands who died at Chimoio and Nyadzonia in Mozambique and those who died in Zambia.
Tsvangirai wants the West to come and help him get into power. He is asking them to impose more sanctions to worsen the economic hardships in the country so that people can turn against the Government. I would like to remind Tsvangirai that when Kenya was in turmoil a few months back, the world just watched people killing each other in a barbaric way. No western country went in there to help because there is nothing of interest to them except tourism. Why should foreigners be invited to sort out our problems? If Tsvangirai was a person of great mind and a proper politician, he would be seeking a solution to our problems from within the country rather than from outsiders. It is clear that there is still class struggle for land as evidenced by the white farmers who have now invaded farms in Masvingo.
MDC-T must know that people shed blood for freedom and this will have been in vain if his White Rhodesians project succeeds. I find it disrespectful when those in MDC-T said war veterans were mobilised in order to cause war. Tsvangirai must apologise for making those comments. I must remind him that in Britain, USA, Japan, China etc they respect their war veterans who fought both in the First and Second World War regardless. The West doesn't want us to respect our own veterans which is why they are calling them militias because of what MDC is portraying them to be. Instead the MDC must stand up for them. I can see MDC's attitude similar to Zimbabwe-Rhodesia and this will not work.
Before my brother went to join the liberation struggle, he was singled out at St Killian's Secondary School in Rusape when he was 18 years by Smith's soldiers that he was collaborating with terrorists. They gave him a warning that they would kill him if they find out that he was on the side of the terrorists. He decided to die fighting than to be killed by Smith's soldiers.
He left a note which read "Mum and dad, brothers and sister and my fellow Zimbabweans, I have gone to fight for your liberation and if I come back good luck to me but if I die, I have died for your liberation." However, what I know is that we may have achieved political independence but for economic emancipation, the battle goes on. Tsvangirai should not be allowed to sell this country for a few pieces of silver.
I urge the whole world to understand and stand by us as a people under the leadership of President Mugabe. Some people do not seem to understand that Zimbabwe has been independent for only 28 years and for the first 10 years the government was bound by the Constitution which had a 10-year moratorium on land. We were colonised for 90 years before we vanquished the settler regime. Now, 28 years is not enough to put things right especially when one is dealing with people who resist change, people who are pulling you down, people who cannot accept to be ruled by a black person. How can someone move forward given those conditions?
The MDC-T is not telling the truth to its supporters and the people of Zimbabwe. They should be stating clearly that they are funded by the British government who initially did not want President Mugabe to come to power? Why does Tsvangirai have among his supporters former Selous Scots who served under the Smith regime. These people killed many of our countrymen and are the same people who are behind the illegal ruinous economic sanctions, which I view as akin to economic terrorism. The westerners have destabilised our economy by externalising forex. People are buying food from Zimbabwe while they are abroad. There is no shortage of food in Zimbabwe apart from it being hoarded by the monopolists.
All those who have Zimbabwe at heart must stand up and be counted and fight this economic terrorism. It is difficult and it will take long but we will win as we did before. We need to be patient and perseverance will pay in the end. Long live Zanu-PF and long live our rich land and our sovereignty.