For me, that visit to my residence by the new President was significant not only in terms of the content of what we discussed but in the import of its overall relevance.
The visit signaled what must be the bane of the new politics of our time that an opposition party, especially one represented in our national Parliament, does not in any way constitute an enemy of the State. The opposition is just as patriotic and aspires and wishes for the best for our people.
Indeed, my engagement with President Mnangagwa must herald a new page in our politics—-a page in which the opposition is considered a partner and not an enemy of the State. The visit can be built upon by truly well-meaning Zimbabweans to herald a new politics of engagement in our country.
Political difference must be celebrated and the people must be allowed to express themselves. That is why I was shocked by the new regime’s iron-fist response two weeks ago to Zimbabweans in Bulawayo who sought to alert the government of the deep-seated wounds that are still festering since the Gukurahundi atrocities of the 1980s.
That response was wanton, unjustified and shows that the Mnangagwa administration still has a lot of work to do to earn our faith and trust.
Fellow Zimbabweans, we begin the New Year mired in deep economic problems from which we need urgent extrication. The cash crisis, price increases, the liquidity crunch, the huge budget deficit and the lack of faith and trust in the sincerity of government and all its institutions remain a somewhat permanent cancer in our body politic.
The onus is on the new administration to inspire hope and confidence in the nation.
True, there appears to have been some effort in tackling corruption but one hopes that the fight against graft and avarice truly becomes wholesome and ceases to be part of a retributive agenda against the ousted faction in Zanu PF. One hopes that the crusade against sleaze and corruption becomes a genuine crusade being fought in the national interest and not to punish a few selected individuals.
Fellow Zimbabweans, we are on the verge of what could be an exciting year especially as we reflect on the great potential we have as a country and as a people.
At a personal level, I feel an air of satisfaction as I reflect on the great journey we have travelled together even as I seriously ponder about the future.
You, the people have travelled with me a journey that had its own tribulations. Yet it was also a journey in which we worked hard and achieved so much together. I am in the process of writing a book that is set to be a collective national treasure on the great things we have achieved together over the years in our journey of service and sacrifice.
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