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The urgency of now

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Wednesday, September 24th, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

After the March Harmonized elections in Zimbabwe we waited for the results to be announced. Then there comes the rerun/runoff of the presidential elections and Zimbabweans waited again for the date to be announced which again took time.

After the June 27 presidential elections Zimbabweans waited for the formation of the government and a new cabinet. This did not happen because of some political differences which led the two main political parties to agree to have Talks to form a new power-sharing government in Zimbabwe.

Mugabe, Mutambara and Tsvangirai signed an agreement on Monday 15th September 2008 to form a power-sharing government to tackle Zimbabwe’s long running political and economic crisis. The leaders cannot agree on a new Cabinet, especially the key posts. Zimbabweans are still waiting for the three leaders to resolve the matter.

But there is no time for waiting. People are dying daily because of deepening poverty amid shortages of food and every basic survival commodity.

The politics of waiting in Zimbabwe

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Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

I waited for a good 2 hours, in a snaking queue of about twenty people who queue so often they now know each other by their first names. Instead of people joining the queue they jump into the queue calling and greeting each other with “hie, hie, or Tichie, TK”. This is all because of the minimum withdrawal limit which is keeping people in queues for a long time every day. The standards at the banks are getting poor by each passing day. Can you believe that at one time we used to get cold water and hot coffee at some of these banks?

Today I was close to the front door and there were about seven people in front of me. But actually there were not really seven, as five school-going girls just came from nowhere and sneaked in front of me. Isn’t there a specific age permitted by these banks for one to open a bank account?

Apart from these queue jumpers, there I was, at the front door of the bank and I made sure no one came and said ‘I am back blaz’. Then I heard a hoarse voice and a slight pat on my right shoulder.  “How are you this morning?” the minister said as he stepped into the bank. Inside the bank the minister was also doing some transactions but what surprised me is that I over heard him asking the balance from the lady teller and she replied “two million and seventy-five something, something” and he said “that’s fine, then leave the seventy-five something, something you are talking about”.

I was a bit shocked with the figure being taken out, and I thought of the 2 hours I had been queuing for $1000.00 which is not enough to take me home with a loaf of bread for the family.

Bank notes are rubble

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Friday, September 19th, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

Just imagine, last week I went to the post office to check how much the postage is these days. I saw a woman holding a plastic bag stacked with old $500 000 notes. She was told by the gentleman behind the counter ” Sorry amai, that money is no longer in use”.

However, today, it was my turn. Because I wanted to make a top up of our office airtime I was looking for the smallest denomination just to keep the window open. My workmate gave me $5billion notes. As I was in a hurry getting to the bank before they closed and also having to buy this airtime for the office I did not check the money properly.

I went straight to the airtime vendor who told me “Aah, blaz! This is now rubble in Zimbabwe, you can just throw it away”. I just quickly pocketed the old notes and used the money I had to buy the airtime and went straight back to the office recalling the embarrassment that the woman at the post office had faced.

Anyway, Friday is always Friday! And that’s a good thing.

A miracle live on TV

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Friday, September 19th, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

Yesterday on my way home the gentleman who gave me a lift turned his radio on and there was this message “Thank you Zimbabweans for voting in peace”, and I wonder why, after 3-4 months since the March 29 harmonized and the presidential runoff, the media is still talking of elections.

The media should be publishing something that brings people together. Is the media aware of the historic agreement signed on Monday 15 September 2008? Were they not the ones broadcasting it live on our national TV stations and radios?

The message which they should be publishing, broadcasting and printing is something that brings people together. Like, ‘Thank you Zimbabwean political parties for signing the Memorandum of Understanding and the Political Settlement in Peace’. Think of the handshake of President RG Mugabe and the Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.  Wasn’t that a miracle? Think that for the past 5 months these two main political figures were miles apart. Think of the horrible messages they used to preach at their campaign rallies.

It’s high time that the media did more to get the leaders messages to Zimbabweans living all over the country, especially the rural folks. Our God is a God of impossibilities, but miracles are possible with God. This is really a miracle, live on TV. We want reconciliation, healing and life of course!

Unity is the word we want to hear from the media.

Proud to be Zimbabwean

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Monday, September 15th, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

At long last, singing and cheering have been the order of the day as I have been out for lunch trying to get some fresh air and to have a short break from the office.

People are relieved, by the signing, and that we have the office of the Prime Minister in Zimbabwe. For the first time members of the public can say their feelings and exchange their ideas openly with the members of the security forces without any harm.

May God bless Zimbabwe. At the cash queue people could not complain about the slow moving queue like they used to a couple of days ago. They were enjoying sharing this breakthrough from the crisis and some were busy texting and sharing the good, or rather breaking news.

The things people want to see solved soon is the availability of food, enough cash, and medication. Some were calling for a ‘Holiday’. People were saying now they can mix well with their relatives who are of the opposing side now that the newly installed Prime Minister has declared that people should unite.

However, it was a good 45minutes before I returned to the office having not eaten anything but I realized that people now are proud to be Zimbabweans at last.

From a bullet to a pen

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Thursday, August 28th, 2008 by Dennis Nyandoro

During the run-off election campaigning period in Zimbabwe, a Zanu PF politician addressing a rally in the country told the gathering of elderly people and school children that a pen cannot simply remove the government or Uncle Bob from State House. The threat of violence was heavy in his voice.

Then on July 21, 2008 the Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the Principals.

The Parties involved in the signing were Zanu PF, the two MDC formations led by Morgan Tsvangirai and by Arthur Mutambara respectively.

However as I commute to and from work people are wondering what really is going on behind the scenes since there’s no publicity on what it is about these talks about talks except when they are deadlocked and will resume again on such and such a day. Crazy.

What surprises most is that the very pen that was once accused of not being able to make things better in Zimbabwe is now being used by Zanu PF for the signing. More so, the so-called talks are deadlocked because of one ‘Principal’s’ signature not being there.

As Zimbabweans we are so confused by this MoU.  Whether its still the ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ or the MoM, the ‘Memorandum of Misunderstanding’.