AS Zimbabweans gather today at the National Heroes Acre to bury a heroine who spent more than six decades to further our development, somewhere schemers who have also spent the better part of their lives trying to undo the same are hard at work.
This time they believe they have found the formula, forging together the scraps and splinters of successive electoral defeats to Zanu-PF into a politically inept “Voltron”.
For those not in the know, Voltron is a 33-year-old American animated television series of a robot formed from three constituent teams from the land, sea and air.
The seven parties that form the MDC Alliance think they are some super robot. A robot doing the bidding of the West, yes; super — no.
As is often said, politics is not a beauty pageant, but a beastly contestation of ideas.
Ideas are the basic building blocks of a national vision and hence of development. Political movements should be driven by persuasive and progressive political ideologies that are strong enough to bring people together to achieve a common good.
Strong ideals and ideas drove women like Cde Shuvai Mahofa to get into the battle to dislodge a racist and bigoted minority system.
Strong ideals and ideas motivated men like Cde George Rutanhire — fittingly steering the Herbert Chitepo School of Ideology until his demise yesterday — to take up arms to further the revolution.
There are many such men and women today that are still in the trenches to ensure that the revolution not only delivers political freedom, but economic empowerment as well.
But looking at the cast that gathered in Highfield on August 4, we see no ideas or progressive ideals.
As Otto von Bismark once said, the only thing we learn from history is that we don’t learn anything from history.
The MDC Alliance is not different from the MDC of 1999 in the sense that it is a collection of different interest groups that are conveniently coming together to oxymoronically achieve the outcome of removing President Mugabe and Zanu-PF at the West’s behest.
So, the question is: how long shall this contrived unity hold?
Already, the cracks are beginning to sound loud enough for all to hear.
MDC-T might soon, for the umpteenth time, be heading for either a spectacular split or major defections as senior members of the party like Thokozani Khupe and Lovemore Moyo weigh their options after Morgan Tsvangirai forcibly shunted the party towards the “alliance”.
For Tendai Biti — who ironically abandoned the MDC for purportedly the same reasons that are at the core of the grievances of his fellow comrades in the opposition formation — it is quite clear that his NDP is not quite pleased by the dictatorial tendency of railroading the party into the so-called alliance.
As recent as last year, Biti, in his typical verbose style, was quoted saying a deal with Tsvangirai was as good as dead in the water.
For Welshman Ncube, another former secretary-general, it suits him well to be out of the political wilderness. But what ideals can they sell to the electorate? What programme of action can they propose?
How can they go about winning the hearts and minds of the majority when nothing has really changed in the way the opposition thinks and behaves?
How is it possible for such splintered interest groups to come up with a cogent and coherent political manifesto that can be palatable for Zimbabweans and take our country forward?
And what will be the ideological leanings of that manifesto?
There are a whole lot of questions that need to be asked between now and the election next year.
But coalitions by their very nature have proven to be unviable, especially on the African landscape.
Case studies abound in Kenya and Tanzania.
Though some of them are now slackening, liberation political movements in Africa cannot possibly be dislodged by mere posturing.
Revolutionaries such as Cde Mahofa and Cde Rutanhire, therefore, can sleep easy, for the revolution will not have an alternative.
Without a sound and sellable ideology, politics of the “Big Tent”, as the MDC-T would like to call it, are doomed.
Evidently, the MDC Alliance is nothing more than fickle political fantasy, which, just like the Titanic, is headed for an iceberg in 2018.
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