By Brian Sedze
A “RATIONAL economic” Zanu PF has been masterminding massive wealth transfers to their enlightened members since 2000. The ruling party members are winning on the economic front by creating wealth which shall benefit future generations of their members.
The opposition on the other hand has been sulking and throwing diatribes on several social media platforms strategically blind to the fact that political, legal and democratic “rightness” was impoverishing many future generations of their own enlightened members.
The wealth has been transferred through programmes, including but not limited to, land acquisition, economic empowerment, youth projects, mining syndicates, tenders, business germinations, special banks, joint ventures, associations, societies, co-operatives and companies. Opposition does not actively encourage its members to participate in most of these formations.
Opposition prefer curriculum vitaes to business plans. In fact there is a “plan” to acquire power first. In my view if it ever happens by then the economic power would have bolted to members of their political adversaries. It’s just like Zanu PF in 1980.
As I write this piece, it is now the start of mainstream agriculture season. Mostly Zanu PF members and or voters are putting seed to the ground. Their rational economic being energised them to expropriate land in a chaotic manner.
The land which was taken from the white farmers shall be compensated by the taxpayer. The taxpayer who shall compensate for the land is predominantly an urbanite opposition supporter.
After investing in politics the opposition shall compensate the farmer. They even agreed on that at the time of the making of the Constitution. They have no land but are paying for land acquired by the political adversaries.
The agricultural inputs for new farmer shall be subsidised by the taxpayer as it has been since the year 2000. It is highly probable that the inputs just like command agriculture shall be a debt. This debt shall be assumed by the taxpayer and the majority is the urbanite predominantly opposition members.
The Reserve Bank debt assumption on “quasi” fiscal expenditure is a future tax on the same people in opposition strongholds. Command agriculture write offs benefited the same ruling party members.
Zamco also assumed debts of the same clique. The opposition is just playing politics without economic literacy. This makes the future generation born by its members a lot more poor.
Since formation in 1999 the opposition has been concentrating on great ideas but elitist in nature. The ideas are great and are really important like constitutionalism, reform, human rights, democracy and rule of law.
The traction of these ideas is doubtful to an educated population that often use emotions to think but not exactly what they actually have read. I say emotions because, as an example, after agreeing to a Constitution that has a clause to compensate white farmers they now say it’s a bad idea. It was a bad idea then but voting for people is not like voting for an idea.
If I was a strategy advisor I would encourage opposition members to join the acquiring of land during the chaotic land reform. By the admission of the opposition itself the land reform is not reversible.
It basically means while the opposition invested in political and legal correctness including fighting in the corner of the Anglo Saxon world the real wealth of the land was transferred from the white farmer to Zanu PF members.
The opposition chose to side with the oppressor and aliens. It may have been politically correct but there are new land owners whose ideals differ with opposition. Their children and grandchildren will sit pretty on that land for decades.
If for some reason the cropping season fails grain will be imported by entrepreneurs and associations run by Zanu PF members. The grain millers will get subsidised maize and wheat.
These subsidies are paid for by taxpayers who are in the majority urbanites who are mainly opposition members. The millers association is mostly made up of Zanu PF members. It is doubtful there are a significant number of opposition businesspeople who even applied for import licences.
The excess produce if any will be sold at market places like Mbare controlled and run by the majority being Zanu PF members. The opposition member’s role is to purchase the produce and fund the members of their political opposites.
It’s a very intricate policy blindfold to invest in politics without economic power. It is doubtful there are opposition members who have made overtures to the opposition-run city councils to run markets like at Mbare and Mupedzanhamo.
Rational economic opposition should have members with business plans and strategies of course in addition to curriculum vitaes. Opposition must find balance by pursuing both wealth creation and politically correct ideas like rule of law, human rights, democracy, reforms and so forth.
The Zanu PF members, who are the majority beneficiaries of the land reform shall be remembered by their grandchildren for bequeathing them prime land.
On the other hand the opposition members shall be remembered for nothing. Fighting without victory is often forgotten and in addition our grandchildren may prefer wealth instead of failed ideas.
This is not exactly a new phenomenon. In 1979 and 1980 one Bishop Abel Muzorewa of the United African National Congress threw stand numbers from a helicopter for Glen View and Glen Norah properties. The stands and houses were for free. Zanu PF and PF Zapu members shunned this offer for political expediency. It later turned out that their members and children are tenants of those who made rational economic decisions.
Times of chaos and crisis are often a period of transfer of wealth. Even if the land required membership cards of Zanu PFs it should have dawned on any rightful-thinking person that membership cards don’t vote but people do. I would have encouraged members to get the damn cards and get the land.
The idea of opposition and ruling party members working on same economic goals should not be an idea so repulsive and remote to pursue. The Zanu PF youths have for years been forming syndicates, associates and co-operatives to acquire mining claims. As it is the largest quantity of gold is being supplied by these formations.
It should have been a great decision for opposition members to pursue riches from the land outside Facebook, Twitter and protests. The youths must be persuaded by their political leaders to do something to create or acquire wealth.
There is often a huge frown when Zanu PF members like Pedzisai “Scott” Sakupwanya flaunt their wealth acquired through mining on social media. It’s without doubt that the emotions are not backed by tangible evidence of any crime he committed but that he just took opportunities based on the God-given bounties of the country.
There is also no evidence that opposition social media pundits have even tried to pursue a gold claim or procurement licence.
Opposition often promotes laziness by peddling half-baked truths just to whip up emotions. Everyone knows that farming and mining are preserved and promoted by the country’s laws.
The tax contribution of the two is negligible because they operate in almost a “tax free” environment. As an example the US$330 000 Henrietta Rushwaya was trying to smuggle may have had a tax loss of less than US$20 000. Government revenue comes from tax not global sales.
One of the most opposed public policy initiatives was the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Act which was pursued with vigour by the ruling party. While opposition encouraged opposition to the Act and its implementation, the ruling party encouraged its members to obtain equity and control of companies. Significant wealth was transferred.
That opportunity has gone because opposition pursued the myopia of jobs. It’s very doubtful a significant number of opposition members had business plans to acquire black empowerment quotas.
Strategic thinking will point to the fact that political power without controlling the economy is really an idea that is not politically sustainable. This idea is alive in Zanu PF and close to dead in the actions of the opposition.
The opposition does not have a significant number of entrepreneurs and its political ideas do not encourage germination of the same.
One Wicknell Chivayo of Intratrek, who is also a known Zanu PF member, is probably not exactly a model entrepreneur. He won a major contract for a solar energy project all the same.
Most of his critics are opposition members but I can certainly say no opposition aligned entrepreneur can actually produce evidence of a more competent tender filed by them to the Zimbabwe Power Company which was disqualified due to corruption.
In fact the collective anger is on behalf of foreign entities that took part in the bidding for the tenders. Anger without individual or collective action to obtain these tenders is really not ideal.
As we approach 2023 the government is said to be solidly deciding to sale some State-owned enterprises. Like in Russia this will be another transfer of wealth and millionaires will be created.
Opposition, which has been at the forefront of pushing for the sale of these enterprises, will have none of their entrepreneur members preparing bid papers. After the tenders have been awarded the social media will be awash with complaints when substandard tenders of the Zanu PF members win the bids.
The complaints will be on behalf of foreign entities. It is with doubt there are any opposition aligned members even preparing a single paper to procure these entities.
It is an imperative for any political party to gain economic power in addition to political power. Without doubt it’s also extremely difficult to gain the latter without solid local financial support.
Funding can be obtained from foreign entities which may result in selling the struggle to foreign interests. These foreign interests often bring with them concepts that are great on paper but difficult to explain to my grandmother in Chiendambuya. ■