Calls for autonomy by minority ethnic groups sweeping across Eastern Europe seem to be trickling down to Africa just like demands for democracy, which resulted in the demise of communism, did.
The current drought could turn out to be a blessing in disguise for the peasant farming sector, which has been milked left, right and centre both by the commercial sector and the government, if the anomalies that have so far been unravelled are addressed at last.
Zimbabweans, hard hit by the ever escalating price increases and expecting some tax relief to enable them to make ends meet, could be in for a surprise as all indications are that the government may in fact introduce a drought levy to enable it to feed more than five million people who will need relief food.
In one of the most closely guarded secrets the state is planning to bring to book people who shot former Gweru Mayor and national organising secretary of the Zimbabwe Unity Movement, Patrick Kombayi.
The immediate image associated with democracy in Africa is of men dressed in tatters, pleading to remain alive.
Faced with the bitter realisation that gains expected from the economic structural adjustment programme and trade liberalisation like increased investment and employment creation are not forthcoming, the government seems to have been forced to move faster to recognise the informal sector – a sector long advocated by the World Bank, one of the major architects and sponsors of ESAPS.