Bill McLeod predicts

-Elections will be held sooner than 1995
-There will be change of leadership with new men coming in

Zimbabwe's next general elections due in 1995 will be held much sooner than that and there is likely to be a change of leadership with new men coming in, a Bulawayo-based clairvoyant, Bill McLeod, has predicted.

The coming year will be full of "changes, changes, changes," he says and some of the top politicians like vice-presidents, Joshua Nkomo and Simon Muzenda, may be forced to go on early retirement.

There will be major cabinet reshuffles but these will be done in stages. Most of the deputy ministers will lose their jobs and once President Mugabe has done his job to the best of his ability he too will be swept away, McLeod says.

McLeod who rose to prominence after predicting the shooting down of two Air Rhodesia Viscounts during the liberation war and the death of the Pope has become world famous for his predictions.

But he is the first to admit that he also made some mistakes. The most recent one was when he predicted that former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher would be replaced by a man whose name started with an H.

In 1980 papers ran stories that Muzorewa would become the first Prime Minister of Zimbabwe after one of McLeod's predictions.

"I am a man I make mistakes. As a medium I am not supposed to make mistakes but there is a human element in me. If I didn't have this human element I would be perfect and I would not be in this world. I would be in God's realms," McLeod says.

He adds that some people merely come to consult him just to prove him wrong. These people, he says, usually succeed because this can put a block on him. If he feels some animosity this inhibits his psychic capability and the medium tends to deny what he is seeing.

"I remember a woman who was a great spirit medium with a proven record and a radio programme. When she was asked about the prospect of the Second World War breaking out in Germany she said there would be no war. But a week later the war broke out. On the surface of it she was wrong. But what actually happened was that her mind came through and thought of the horrors, killings and the murders that were to take place and her mind refused to accept this and put up a barrier."

McLeod says that the time factor in his predictions could be a bit misleading because time is a man-made thing and there is no time in the spirit world. He also says at times he has to be guarded in his predictions, although this might not be deliberate, because the predictions might cause more problems than they are meant to solve.

He says this must have been the case when John Major took over. He says Major was just a compromise person and Heseltine will take over one day. In the case of Muzorewa, he says, what he saw was that a small man who wore spectacles and whose name started with M would be prime minister.

"I remember in 1980 people coming to me to talk to me about the result of the elections and I said to them a small man with spectacles with a name beginning with the letter M will become the prime minister of Zimbabwe.

"People jumped on to Muzorewa. But I must admit that to have really come out with Mugabe would have caused real problems both to myself and to other people, so at times it is better to give a very guarded prediction. "But it is not necessarily I who decides to give the guarded version because sometimes the spirit knows that the medium's mind is very much against what is being revealed or that the revelation will cause a lot of reaction," he says.

This does not, however, deter him from making further predictions as he believes that people have a choice to take or leave what he says.

For 1992, McLeod says: "I think we will survive. There will be a bit of recession and slowly, slowly we will come out of it.

"I feel that there is going to be tremendous changes of policy and ideas where I think there are going to major cabinet reshuffles. But I think it will be done in stages. I feel changes in cabinet and parliament.

"I feel changes, changes, changes, I feel that there could be talk of early retirement for certain men and people like Nkomo and Muzenda may take early mature retirement. I feel a lot of deputy ministers might lose their positions.

"The civil service will be trimmed tremendously more than what has been promised under ESAP and this will increase the unemployment problem and there will have to be a realistic look on how to produce more employment and more investment.

"I feel that the structural adjustment programme will succeed but this will make this government much more unpopular than it is today. But I feel there is nothing that government can do because it is something that has to be done it is only part of destiny.

"The way I see it is that the country is going through phases. There was a time for great African kings, then there was a time for colonialism followed by a time for African nationalism. Now that too has gone. I believe Robert Mugabe has done the best job according to his ability and in time he will be swept away. The next general election will come by much sooner than expected.

"There will be many changes. A lot of old wounds are now dying off. New men will come forward. I have been asked several times who I see succeeding Mugabe. I don't know but I feel new men with new ideas will come in. As things change next year you will find new men coming forward.

"Elections will come much sooner than expected. I do not see them coming in 1995. Eventually, ZANU-PF will lose support because of the worsening economy. Many people say to me that this is nonsense."

McLeod says the healing of old wounds will also see more books about the country's war being published. He could not specify which wars he was talking about but said that it would cover the whole spectrum as there are different people. These books, he says, will reveal new information and ideas.

On a rather sad note he says: "I feel that there could be a strong move afoot for Matebeleland to split up and it will gain a bit of support. But it may not result in a split."

McLeod also says, ZANU (Ndonga) leader Ndabaningi Sithole, who has been in self-imposed exile in the United States and is reported to be planning to come back, will be an instrument of change in this country but he will not take the top job.

"I have heard many people say Sithole is being groomed to come and take over this country but I myself believe that he could be an instrument to start bringing change to this country but I do not think he himself will be the one who changes things."

He says, however, despite the problems the country will survive because it has the hand of God upon it.

"I think there will be rains but they will be late. This should force us to take steps to preserve our environment because we have been a menace to our environment. But definitely water for Bulawayo will come from the Zambezi and I see three large dams in Matebeleland North.

"We are going to see very hard times, very difficult times. It will take months, but I feel a lot of businesses will close down because of lack of water and unemployment will increase," McLeod says.

On AIDS, he says, the only lasting solution seems to be changes in moral behaviour.

"I do not think there is a cure for AIDS as such because I believe that mankind was overpopulating the world and was becoming a threat to the environment. So it is more of a control of population growth. The answer to a disease like AIDS is on the moral side. I imagine that there will be medications that will control AIDS but I would say AIDS has been with mankind for a long time.

"In the Bible you are warned about this, you are warned about homosexuality. Thirty or 40 years ago in East and Central Africa there was this disease called "thin disease" even in Mashonaland. I would say this is an old disease."

Other predictions made by McLeod are that:

  • "I feel in this country that as the life in Israel changes and they adopt more realistic policies there will be ties with Israel and I see Israelis coming with technical assistance and experience to try and reclaim much of the land in agriculture.
  • "I feel China is going to moderate its polices tremendously and will have a great deal to do with Southern Africa.
  • "Looking at Africa as a whole I see changes, changes, changes, everywhere for many of the boundaries are artificial and will need changing.
  • "I believe F.W de Klerk is genuine in what he is trying to do to remove apartheid but the curse of Africa, tribalism, will raise its ugly head. I do not think Mandela as such will rise to the top. I just feel he is an instrument for change.
  • "I see something like a United States of Southern Africa developing within the next years. It is something bigger than SADCC.
  • "President Banda has lasted longer than I would have expected but he will soon be swept away and I feel another man with the name of Banda will lead Malawi.
  • "The one-party state in Kenya will disintegrate and the days of Mobutu are gone."
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