Opinion: Please, Pastor Evan Mawarire not run for President!
“If the opportunity presents itself . . . why not?” Mawarire said after he was asked about his presidential aspirations during an interview on Thursday” (…) “I don’t want to close the door on myself,” he added” (…) “He said “let people be allowed to do things that they feel and see if they will be able to bring change” (Machamire, 2017).
Let’s be perfectly clear, I respect and want to honour the activist and caring citizen Pastor Evan Mawarire, for his struggle and commitment for a better Zimbabwe. I salute you and your work for a better nation. Zimbabwe deserves liberty, freedom and justices for others than just the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF) elite, like President Robert Mugabe and Gucci Mugabe.
So the struggle and hard work for social justice and a transparent society is worth every second that Mawarire uses for it. That Mawarire has been and is the leading champion of the poor and the ones who doesn’t have the courage to stand against the Zanu-PF elite, is not only Noble, but a proof of that for him it isn’t just words for him. Mawarire is a man I look up-to and wished I had the same drive against corruption, impunity and unjust behaviour from central government.
Since of that, I want to say to him something that is strange, but what I had in mind when I saw his interview in clips on Al-Jazeera this morning. On the aftermath that the Zimbabwean people will be electing President Mugabe even when he is dozing off in his casket. That is sad state of affairs and the proof of lacking governance in the Republic. Still, I want to ask Evan Mawarire, don’t go for public office!
Why? You might risk your voice and your possibility to trade your ethics and your standing amongst the ones who fight for justice. Mawarire you will trade-off against a rigged system and in the midst of burning of fire. The opportunities to be traded and negotiated away as the offices and the positions are offered. Just look at how the little power and the lesser acts of government titles has eaten away the changing rhetoric and public standing for Morgan Tsvangirai and his Movement for Democratic Change (MDC).
With that in mind, I am afraid of the future of Pastor Evan Mawarire and his #ThisFlag movement, if it goes from an activist and political influencer to being a political party. Than the initial organization and acts will be to comply and working in harmony with the political structures, instead of changing and knocking on the doors of a rotten regime.
All that matters is rule of law and stop the impunity, it might resurrect and get people active in ways that never has happen before, might even create more havoc and more public uprising than when MDC and Tsvangirai in 2002:
“he Zimbabwe registrar-general, Tobaiwa Mudede, declared that Mr Mugabe had won a fifth term in office after the results from all 120 constituencies were returned. He said Mr Mugabe had won 1,685,212 votes against 1,258,401 for challenger Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)” (…) “We foresaw electoral fraud but not daylight robbery,” Mr Tsvangirai said. “We find ourselves unable to endorse the purported election of President Robert Mugabe as Zimbabwe’s president in this election. It’s the biggest election fraud I’ve witnessed in my life.” (McGreal & MacAskill, 2003).
So when he did this in 2002 and was 78 year old, now that he is 93 years old and still going, even running for next term in the coming election. The place and time for Evan Mawarire is problematic. Tsvangirai was running a big campaign and even did everything right before losing to a fraudulent election in 2002.
The same might happen as the Zanu-PF machinery will be in all-out and with all force against anyone going to question the Mugabe Administration. They will all suffer and struggle a hazardous part, no matter on what ethical ground or what policies that Mawarire will run on, the risk of losing all goodwill and all the activists. You cannot drain the system and drag it automatically with you. The people will easily be behind a man who has integrity and has the moral backbone as you have Mawarire. You are a rare breath and one out of a few. Therefore I don’t want to risk what you have for the uncertainty.
The uncertainty, the lacking machinery and the strength against the biggest and longest serving party for one-man party under Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe. Mugabe has been able to get enough loyalist and enough monies to pay off the ones that could question him. Certainly he will pay and rig the next election like ever before. Mugabe will use security forces, the police and army veterans to vamp-up the people to be behind long-serving president by any means.
President Mugabe, will be fierce and unapologetic against Mawarire, he has already addressed him in unfavourable ways. Therefore don’t run if you want to weaken your station and your space. You have loyalty because you have nothing to lose! Your place as an activist and a voice for the people is more worth than a title and raise for public office. You might lose many on the way, as your views and ideas of health-care, industrial policies or taxes might shrug the people of Bulawayo off! Mawarire, you never know if your policies and your programme will be selling in the minds of all Zimbabweans. No matter how Draconian the current leadership and administration is.
So please honourable and steady freedom fighter, activist and the voice of the people, don’t run for public office, don’t trade off your place and risk losing your integrity and work for justice for silver coins in office and as a politician. So many good leaders and honourable men have been eaten by office and by political life. Don’t be another civilian loosing it’s wealth of integrity over cheap tricks in office. This is a little plea from far away. Just a reminder of your power and your reach as the man you are now! Peace.
Machamire, Farayi – ‘I would run for Presidency’ (18.02.2017) link: http://nehandaradio.com/2017/02/18/run-presidency-mawarire/#sthash.JBnCg5eU.dpuf
McGreal, Chris & MacAskill, Ewen – ‘Mugabe victory leaves west’s policy in tatters’ (14.03.2002) link: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2002/mar/14/zimbabwe.chrismcgreal