Trump, the MDC and US$15 billion

Tau Tawengwa
Whichever way one looks at it, that form of politics is detestable, as Chamisa’s comments demonstrate that Zimbabwe’s opposition is willing to see the entire country continue languishing under sanctions for as long as those sanctions are politically expedient for the opposition’s quest for power.
Again, I say that kind of politics is detestable.

According to reports, the MDC-Alliance was on the campaign trail recently trying to garner votes for the soon to be held 2018 harmonised elections.

While campaigning in Mutare, the MDC-Alliance represented by one Nelson Chamisa allegedly made the following bizarre proclamations: “When we met with President Trump in America alongside (Tendai) Biti, he asked us how much we needed to move the country forward and we told him that we needed US$15 billion.

“He assured us that the money will be disbursed soon after winning the elections. He told us that he had faith in us because we don’t behave like Zanu-PF crooks.”

At the same rally, it is alleged that Chamisa made the following remarks with respect to Dr Joice Mujuru’s National People’s Party and her Rainbow Coalition: “. . . Mai Mujuru please come with your parties and join rwizi rukuru (the big river) Save (Morgan Tsvangirai). We have done a pact with all these parties but we are moving forward to form a grand coalition.”

To the unassuming political eye, these comments could pass as innocent and blameless.

However, to anyone with the slightest sense of patriotism and self-respect, these comments come across as patronising and ill-thought.

Lest we forget, as recently as the 23rd of December 2017, The New York Times reported that in an Oval Office meeting in June 2017, Donald Trump said Haitian immigrants “all have Aids” and that Nigerians would never “go back to their huts”.

Let us remember here that Haitians and Nigerians are predominately black.

Furthermore, according to reports, in January 2018 at a White House meeting on immigration, President Trump reportedly loudly wondered why the US was admitting people from Haiti and Africa, referring to Haiti and Africa as “sh*thole countries” and suggesting more immigration from places like Norway.

These are just two of many discriminatory and prejudicial comments that have been attributed to Donald Trump in recent times.

Ordinarily, Zimbabweans would not concern themselves with such; but because this is an election year, this bizarre claimed relationship between the MDC-Alliance and Donald Trump must be analysed.

Firstly, when Chamisa and Biti went to the United States in December, they were publicly chastised by Zimbabweans from all walks of life for what was perceived to be their calls for further sanctions on our country.

Of course, they denied that they had called for the maintenance of US sanctions on Zimbabwe.

Yet Chamisa’s recent utterances indicate that the US government has over the years indeed sanctioned Zimbabwe as whole owing to its discontent with Zanu-PF.

Furthermore, Chamisa’s statements reinforce the long-time perception of the MDC as a political project that is Western controlled and not home-grown.

Whichever way one looks at it, that form of politics is detestable, as Chamisa’s comments demonstrate that Zimbabwe’s opposition is willing to see the entire country continue languishing under sanctions for as long as those sanctions are politically expedient for the opposition’s quest for power.

Again, I say that kind of politics is detestable.

Secondly, it is beyond bizarre how Africans like Chamisa can gloat an unholy alliance with someone who believes we are a “sh*thole” country.

Since he made the comments about Trump’s alleged US$15 billion pledge to the MDC-Alliance, Chamisa’s public stature has diminished somewhat, and many are now doubting his political acumen and maturity.

No mature politician would publicly say something as ill-advised as that.

Finally, the MDC-Alliance’s US$15 billion claim – which the US government has anyway ridiculed – shows once again that the MDC and their alliance partners have nothing concrete to offer in terms of policy direction and leadership and that instead, they suffer from a form of dependency syndrome.

As I have argued before, the MDC’s politics since 1999 have been centred around the “Mugabe must go” mantra.

However, since the advent of the new dispensation, the opposition have been stripped of that slogan, and now they are politically naked and reliant upon a pie-in-the sky US$15 billion kitty.

Ultimately, I don’t blame Joice Mujuru for not joining this MDC-Alliance. It makes no political sense to desire to associate with such a brand of politics.

23,718 total views, no views today