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Opinion: ED might say every right thing now, but follow his actions!

The new Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa might say all the right things. ED might also order a lot of good things. Like he early did order all sort of actions to get back money that has been stolen in the previous administration. Get the funds that has been embezzled during the 37 years under President Robert Mugabe. Still, even with the days without possible problems and also no charges. There hasn’t really come any funds back to Zimbabwe after this order.

ED might say he is for press freedom. Also that he is for free and fair elections. Might speak of possible international investors and get better investor climate. ED might spread the news of public interactions and give credible interviews to international news-organization. All of that might stem from the changes of leadership, because ED will act differently to foreigners, than Mugabe who despised them. That is well known, that is why he even came with blazing thunder in his last United Nations address.

ED might say he will changes things, but since November, what other thing has changed then giving #ThisFlag Evans Mawarire his official freedom. Giving way to opposition parties and letting them all demonstrate once against the Mugabe. Since then, the Zimbabwe hasn’t really changed. The cabinet is filled with lots of same old faces. The government is contained by the army who ushered in ED. They have more power than before.

The Herald has been praising ED and had for long ads filled with praise. They have main articles and usually positive towards the new President. Zimbabwe Broadcasting Company (ZBC) is only still showing live from ZANU-PF rallies and following the family of ED. Like today they showed one rally of the ruling party and also followed the first lady speaking. The MDC-T and others are not usually shown on the channel. Clearly, many things haven’t changed since Mugabe left office.

Other than Grace Mugabe struggling to move her valuables from South Africa and Zimbabwe into Botswana. Where her sons and other family members moving expensive luxury cars and its leaked to the media. Wonder if that was picked up by government and they wanted the former Presidential family to pay taxes on these luxurious items? That would have been noble example. Not only the former G-40 members of cabinet who are eating charges and struggling to redeem themselves after Mugabe’s fall.

That ED has talked about fighting corruption and making the courts proper. Haven’t been proven, it is very selective who is charges and who is criminal of the old elite. That is also concerning, that many in the cabinet is previous leaders, who has done their thing during Mugabe. They will not change, maybe the rhetoric and the ways of ED are different. Still, the reality of people lingering in prison. That political activists are still not 100 % free. That the governance and the state functions are still not functioning. That government services is still depleted. It will take time to fix that and to make it less about one person and build institution. However, ED hasn’t open the doors yet.

ED might do the talk, he promises elections and changes in governance. However, his actions and the ones of the government hasn’t been fruitful yet. Their still pursuing bond-notes, there is still no substantial changes. Some Members of Parliament has been kicked-out and a few officers in the Police Service. Therefore, it is minor changes, like the army took major part of the Cabinet. That should worry, since the army is boasting the same Zanu-PF, just without Mugabe and ED instead. If you don’t see, then your reading the nice print from ED, instead of asking why he is changing the Zanu-PF in anyway?

ED should have started to reform the Zanu-PF more, if he wants to be really serious. The one bringing down the goblin. Doesn’t have to do much, but assess the whole government to assist the government with proper governance. Which means in general, that the ministries will not only give cars to chiefs, but he will actually make Ministries actually do their duty and deliver to the citizens. Its not a magic wand, but acting with the simple ideal of taxation and representation.

ED can do this and also give details on how the election will be and how the they will try to make framework for level playing-field for all parties. Usually, the ruling regime is running over the parties and humble them through the campaigns, even using the state to oppress the others. Therefore, it is time to see if it is all talk or reality. If he is bluffing or planning to open society. Risking it all or besieging his new position.

Time will tell, but not eat it all up and believe that he will change it. ED will not only do it, when he knows that he gets political currency without to much cost the regime. Peace.

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Zimbabwe: Press Statement on De-Dollarisation (17.01.2018)

ZANU-PF preparing for Elections as in previous years – giving posh cars to Chiefs!

The are scheduled for General Election in September 2018. This has the new President Emmerson Mnangagwa after the ousting of 37 years of Robert Mugabe in November 2017. The new Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) government, which is installed with help of the army and has initial ministries run by important military leaders. Clearly, they are gearing up to secure their livelihood and their future.

So over the weekend there are reports that the Crocodile is planning to do what the Goblin used to do. Pay off the cultural leaders and tribal chiefs of the Republic. Since they have asked for the same benefits as the Cabinet Ministers and Principals Secretaries, who are all getting posh-cars for their service and being in government. The same sort of corrupt activity is something the chiefs wants too. Therefore, this January 2018, shows that ZANU-PF is still the same. Just another figurehead. ED is acting just like Mugabe did. Nothing changes, except the for the name of the Presidency. The act of giving away 280 posh cars is something good old Bob would have done if he still was in power.

In January 2018:

The President assured all other chiefs that they will get their cars before this year’s harmonised elections. There are 52 cars here today. 26 more will arrive next week and so on. All of you will get their cars before elections but today we will distribute 48 cars, six cars per province,” said Cde Mnangagwa” (…) “I am the one who invited you to this conference. I know that it was supposed to be me visiting each one of you but I realised that you are 280 and if I had to meet one of you every week, it would take me three years to complete. I know that you might be aware of what has happened to our country but I felt it was proper for me to officially brief you on the situation. Yes I am now the new President of Zimbabwe after former President [Robert] Mugabe resigned on 21 November 2017, paving way for my swearing in on 24 November,” he said.” (ZBC, 2018)

That is how ED has done it. Now we can see how Bob did it in his day. This is just in recent years. Not even digging deep into the scandals and the cars that has been given away. Here is some reports from 2012 and 2014. That shows what happen this weekend. Could easily happen in the past. Therefore, ED doesn’t do anything different from what Bob did in his day. That should concern Zimbabweans, who thought ED would bring something new, sorry brother, he brings more of the same.

In July 2012:

As if taking a cue from cabinet ministers, the force recently purchased the 2012 models of top of the range vehicles like the BMW 328i series saloon cars, Range Rover Sports, Nissan Navara LE double cabs to latest Ford Ranger LXT and double cab Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) for senior officers. The delivery of vehicles comes hard on the heels of cabinet’s outrageous splash of over US$20 million for the purchase of Mercedes Benz E280s for ministers, Land Rover Discovery 4 TDis for deputy ministers, and Jeep Cherokees and Range Rovers for permanent secretaries late last year” (…) “Other senior civil servants like principal directors and directors now drive the latest Isuzu KB300Dtec double cabs while parliamentarians have received either Isuzu 300Dtec or Mazda BT50 double cabs. The police took delivery of the vehicles in the last six weeks but the cars have remained out of the public eye since they are unmarked and have no registration plates. The Zimbabwe Independent saw the new fleet parked at the designated senior officers’ parking bays at Police General Headquarters in Harare. Sources revealed that the saloon cars and SUVs were bought for senior officers from the rank of Senior Assistant Commissioner (SAC) to Commissioners and the Commissioner-General” (Zimbabwe Independent, 2012).

In December 2012:

The government is set to spend almost $9 million on an unbudgeted traditional chiefs’ vehicle scheme after a Parliamentary portfolio committee recommended that each of them receive $35 000 instead of $18 000 to buy vehicles. The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Local Government recommended that the 250 traditional chiefs should be allocated $35 000 each to procure vehicles of their choice, as their terms of office were much longer than those of MPs” (Zimbabwe Situation, 2012).

In October 2014:

Harare – President Robert Mugabe’s broke government is set to splash $ 11 million on off-road vehicles to appease the increasingly vocal chiefs who want to be feted like kings” (…) “On Tuesday, Finance Minster Patrick Chinamasa told Parliament that Treasury was seized with the cheifs’ request off-roader vehicles – 280 Ford Rangers – whose price averages $50,000 at local dealership” (Zvauya, 2014).

So as in 2012 and 2014, that the government are giving traditional chiefs cars for millions of US Dollars. They are doing the same in 2018. Just that its ED instead of Bob doing so. There is no difference in it and the reason behind it. The Traditional Chiefs are getting it months in advance of coming election. To make sure their loyalty to ZANU-PF is still there and taken care off. There is no gifts without a pink slip. The chiefs are getting it, because then they are in the debt of the ruling party. ED knows this and the chiefs knows this. Bob knew that too, when he was doing similar and promising similar gifts to them.

The are promises to be made and also policy changes, but this fit the ordinary pattern of Bob. Only under the new flagship sponsored also by the military leadership who toppled him. ED should be careful, but with this act during the weekend. He was just acting in the same way as Bob. For all the matters of the Traditional Chiefs, he could be Bob. If they get cars from ED or Bob is the same. They are still payed off and paid for loyalty. Not for service delivery, but for staying loyal to the ZANU-PF and the ruling regime as it is. Peace.

Reference:

Zimbabwe Broadcasting Company (ZBC) – ‘Chiefs receive cars’ (13.01.2017) link: http://www.zbc.co.zw/?p=71486

Zimbabwe Situation – ‘Chiefs cars to gobble $9 million’ (18.12.2012) link: http://www.zimbabwesituation.com/news/zimsit_w_chiefs-cars-to-gobble-9-million-newsday-zimbabwe/

Zimbabwe Independent – ‘ZRP splashes on luxury cars’ (07.06.2012) link: https://www.theindependent.co.zw/2012/06/07/zrp-splashes-on-luxury-cars/

Zvauya, Chengetai – ‘Govt to splash $11m on chiefs’ vehicles’ (04.10.2014) link: https://www.dailynews.co.zw/articles/2014/10/04/govt-to-splash-11m-on-chiefs-vehicles

Zimbabwe: “Only to believe messages from Official Channels concerning the First Family” (29.12.2017)

Zimbabwe: Press Statement by the Acting Chief Secretary to the Assignment of Functions to Honourable Vice President of the Republic of Zimbabwe (29.12.2017)

Zimbabwe: “Press Statement by the Commander Zimbabwe National Army: Leutenant General Phillip Valerio Sibanda” (18.12.2017)

Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) Press Statement (18.12.2017)

Opinion: Beware, don’t build a cult around Mnangagwa!

I know that this is something that shouldn’t be written about, but still I do. Because the state can go into the same mistakes as it did with former President Robert Mugabe. The newly sworn-in President Emmerson Mnangagwa, that after a bloodless military coup got a new cabinet and a new position. While Mugabe ruled for years upon end. 37 year to be exact. He had the time to build the systems around him and stifle the state reserves his way and to his loyal cronies.

Now the changes might occur, but the reality is that the Herald, the Zimbabwe African National Union – Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) and other state institutions have praised the new President. They have given him honor, they have named a barracks after him and soon we can await street changes too. There are even reports of will to change Robert Mugabe Avenue to Mnangagwa Avenue in Harare. That is just telling, that the Zanu-PF is on the same route. Just with another head.

The coup might change a old problem, the coup might change the pivotal part of the problem, but it hasn’t changed the organization behind it. They are still all able to live in riches and to be capable of doing similar acts as before. They are making clothes in similar fashion like with Mugabe, but with the face of Mnangagwa. We can wonder if the praises of ZANU-PF will be as godly as they we’re concerning the previous ones. The cadres of the party was putting him next to God, he was in bible and would even deciding the faith of all people at the pearly gates.

With this in mind, the Zanu-PF and the people should make sure they are not doing the same with Mnangagwa. He is from the same cloth as the previous President and he has been apart of the party the whole time. Mnangagwa knows the drills and knows the political game. Therefore, he will use his position, but also to his gain. If he will fall for the praises, the editorials of blessed leadership and the content built to build him up. Instead of having questions about the current leadership, about the party and the role of the military. The lack of partisan institutions and such. The need for change for a better New Zimbabwe. Than, the Mnangagwa era will be more of the same.

Since it has started where the Mugabe era ended. There have been a few arrests, but the Cabinet is more of the old guys plus a few military leaders. Tomorrow is also awaiting the press conference of General Chiwenga, to see if he steps up and becomes one of the two Vice-Presidents. That would not be shocking, because of the role of the military of late. Mnangagwa has to pay back in currency, since he wouldn’t be in-charge if it wasn’t for them.

Clearly, this will not be easy, as the same traits of a cult is building around Mnangagwa, as he is big new savior and big new change of glory. He will be the beacon of hope in the midst of inflation and rising prices on bread. There are enough issues going into Christmas. They will be there when 2018 strikes. What matter is that the people, the ZANU-PF and the rest. Should be aware and be worried.

That they are building a personality cult around Mnangagwa. Just like they did with Mugabe. It is just a 75 year old instead of 93 year old man. Mnangagwa deserve to try out and see if he can win an election in 2018. However, he isn’t a giant hero, before he has done something heroic. Right now he is just filling in the spaces left by the former administration. That he was apart until he was sacked.

The Zimbabweans doesn’t deserve another cult, around another Executive and another President. Mnangagwa, is just a man representing all Zimbabweans. Supposed to deliver government services to the Citizens. That is why he is President. He is not a President because he deserves praise or glory. He is just a man and let him be that. Emmerson Mnangagwa don’t need to glorified, he needs to be tested and needs to be put under scrutiny all the time. His reign shouldn’t be like the end of Mugabe, but be of questions and be of demonstrations for service delivery. That has been lacking for decades. Peace.

Tendai Biti: Testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Africa and Global Health policy – “Zimbabwe at the Crossroads: A Chance for a New Beginning” (12.12.2017)

Since Zimbabwe is still not rid of the Zanu-PF dictatorship, let us remember some wise words from the Father of Zimbabwe – Joshua Nkomo!

The whole story and political legacy of comrade Joshua Nkomo is to big for a small quick and brief article. This here is just a brief parts of his legacy of his history and what he achieved, while becoming the Father of Zimbabwe. The man who had deserved to be the President and be one who ruled as a just ruler in the Republic after the fall of Ian Smith’s minority government. It wasn’t only now disgraced President Robert Mugabe who liberated Zimbabwe, there we’re several people behind that. It was the now War Veterans and also other political leaders. There was also different external support of both ZAPU and ZANU, ZAPU was supported with weapons from Soviet, while ZANU was supported by Chinese and still is today. ZAPU through progression made a Patriotic Front. With time also got part of the one-party system and became disfranchised by Mugabe into the ZANU-PF.

Nkomo did a lot in his political career from being a Union leader and into a fully fledged Nationalist. Standing against the imperialists, even being questioned for his negotiations and his mindset towards the colonizers. Even so, he pursuit the goal and changed methods with time. He went from being allies, went into exile several times and even feared for his life. Because he stood by the cause, the liberation and freedom. While Mugabe used the liberation for his own personal gain and to take total control, one of the casualties was Nkomo and his tribe. Therefore, the cost of his liberation are still evident today. As ZANU-PF ate up his party, but his legacy will live on. Because he was steadily working on the quest for liberation not only from the British, but from a government who took away the freedom from its citizens.

Secret telegram to Nkomo in 1982:

In September 1982, British government learnt that Nkomo’s forces were upset that he joined Mugabe and facilitated the arrest of Dumiso Dabengwa and Lookout Masuku” (…) “The full letter from Zipra forces to Joshua Nkomo who was at the time a minister in Mugabe’s government is believed to have triggered Gukurahundi: “We are declaring that we are no more commanders. Why are you supporting Mugabe the puppet and not returning Dabengwa and other commanders who are in jail? Why are you campaigning that the tourists be returned before our other demands are met? We want Dabengwa and Masuku from you now, Joshua because you are the one who caused them to be arrested. (The reason for this you know. You told us at Gwai.You are afraid of being arrested).This means you want to be a friend of puppet Mugabe, the one you were saying was a dog. This s the last warning until Masuku and other commanders are freed.To us ZIPRA forces, Zapu military wing, you are our enemy number 1.We shall prove it by action.(Do you remember saying a man keeps a club?). We will meet at the unknown capitalism, Zimbabwe. Down with puppet Mugabe. Down with Zanu PF. The war must be prepared for. We have the tourists too until our demands (B) are met” (Mawire, 2016).

Nkomo in 1983:

In retrospect, I now believe that I and ZAPU were deceived and cheated by you and your party when you talked of unity, reconciliation, peace and security. I now honestly and sincerely believe that when you invited us to take part in your government you believed that we would reject your offer and set ourselves up in strong opposition to you and thereby label us disgruntled rejected plotters” (…) “It is now obvious to me that when you demoted me from the Ministry of Home Affairs which you knew was negotiated for a purpose at the time you invited us to take part in your government; that while you knew that we felt it was necessary for us to take part in one of the security ministries (Defence or Home Affairs) so that the former ZIPRA men drafted into the ZNA and ZRP may feel confident, thereby solidify both the army and the police, you deliberately took that action. It is clear you wanted us to pull out of your government at that time so as to destabilize the army and the police, create dissidents out of the deserting ZIPRA men and then call us plotters against your government” (…) “The double tragedy of Zimbabwe today is, firstly, that the routine and administrative use of detention, torture and arbitrary repression has been adopted by an independent government, and secondly, that this government uses the very same mercenaries and torturers as the former regime used against the struggling people. In fact the situation today is in some respects is even worse, as our government has abandoned even those standards of bourgeois legality which the Smith regime generally attempted to hide their repression behind. Under that regime you could be detained but a least you were more likely to be issued with a detention order. You were therefore, less likely to simply disappear as is the case today. The mercenaries and torturers used by the former regime are known and are very few, and therefore their exclusion from our security organs could not have disrupted those organs” (…) “One of the most disgraceful and shaming aspects of our independence which is difficult to defend, is that we have taken the methods and men used to oppress, torture and kill our people and tried to use them to consolidate our ‘independence’. You cannot take weapons, methods and people designed to defend colonial fascism and try to use to them defend the people. It is just not possible. Today in Zimbabwe the same torturers that Smith used against the people are back in business ‘defending a people’s government’. They must smile to themselves when they are ordered to continue their torture of patriots by an independent government” (…) “This is not government, it is the abuse of government, an abuse which transforms the rule of law into the law of rule. As such it cannot lead to a free, united, peaceful and prosperous Zimbabwe. But to one in which oppression, division, violence and poverty will shadow all our hopes, and make a mockery of the freedom struggle in which so many heroes gave their lives” (Nkomo, 1983)

Nkomo in 1984:

‘We believe that what is happening has not been necessarily ordered by the authorities but that young men are doing things on their own. But when you appeal to the government for action and they don’t do anthing, you come to believe that some of these things are arranged,’ Nkomo said ‘We must fight against these things. You cannot have a one-party state with people torn to pieces by tribalism and hatred unless those in power are confused and continue with this gospel of hate,’ he said” (UPI, 1984).

From his own book:

In his account, Nkomo was careful to distinguish between the new ZANU-PF government and ZANU-PF as a party. While he criticised ZANU-PF as a party for trying to kill him, Nkomo (1984, p. 1) remained committed to the newly independent government: Robert Mugabe had decided to have me out of the way, and he evidently did not care what method was used. But I hold the legitimate government of Zimbabwe innocent of this atrocity. Mugabe was acting not as prime minister, but as leader of his party, ZANU […]. As leader of ZANU he acted outside the law: but the law and the constitution of Zimbabwe remain in force, and I hold the ruling party, not the lawful government, responsible for the attempt on my life” (…) “It is not too late to change all that, to muster the collective energy of our people and build the new Zimbabwe we promised all those long years of suffering and struggle. During my brief exile in 1983 I appealed in this way to Prime Minister Robert Mugabe, calling as a start for a national conference of all the country’s interest groups, under his chairmanship, to begin the process of reconciliation. He did not answer then. Perhaps in the interval between writing this book and its publication he will change his mind and reply constructively. For my part, I shall continue working to that end. Long Live Zimbabwe!” (Ndlovu-Gasheni, 2010).

Both Smith and Kaunda chose Nkomo as the right candidate for negotiations for two reasons. First, because it was perceived, he was a generally acceptable figure among Zimbabweans, also as a possibly leader of an independent black government. Second, Kaunda in particular saw Nkomo as an astute negotiator who would not betray his people by negotiating for nothing less than majority rule. To Kaunda, Nkomo had already shown good political negotiating skills throughout his career as the leader of SRANC, NDP, and now ZAPU. Although the talks broke down over the timing of the introduction of the majority rule, Nkomo was willing to compromise on some aspects in his quest for independence. One thing that he could not compromise on though was the need for political independence and equality on a one man, one vote basis” (…) “Undoubtedly, the memory of Nkomo’s contributions to the decolonization of Zimbabwe, as father of Zimbabwean nationalism, astute and untiring negotiator, nationalist and subsequently in the postcolonial Zimbabwe, statesman, will forever be part of our history. That is what perhaps Eddison Zvogbo, a onetime Minister of Justice, when he positively reflected on Nkomo’s legacy a few days after his death. He stated, ‘It is true that all of us die, but some truly don’t die. It will never be possible for Joshua Nkomo’s name to vanish from our history. Josh will never die’” (Sibanda, 2017).

This is just minor tales of the political maverick and ambitious Nkomo was and his wishes for the new Zimbabwe. His vision didn’t happen and Mugabe took control. The state didn’t significantly change. He also became a part of ZANU-PF government, even after the slaughter of his ethnic brothers. That stain has former been part of ZANU-PF and the oppressive acts of Mugabe and his henchmen. One of them has now become the President Emmerson Mnangagwa. There are several other leaders who participated in these events. While Nkomo went into exile and later came back again.

I have just focused on the early 1980s and the change from Smith to Mugabe government, where Nkomo got squeezed and his leadership got ceased.

But let end with the word of ZAPU Spokesperson Iphithule kaMaphosa earlier this year:

Since the departure of the great visionary and father of the nation, Zimbabwe was plunged into all forms of anarchy and disorder with corruption, nepotism, tribalism, looting and sheer disregard of the constitution becoming the order of day. It became clear as to who was fighting these vices while it exposed Mugabe’s government both as instigators and perpetrators of these vices that has seen the demise of the once prosperous and strong economy to become a huge heap of ruins” (…) “His were aspirations of nation building with equality, dignity and fairness being cornerstone values of a democratic nation state of Zimbabwe. He abhorred tribalism and racism as practiced by the current government. He abhorred corruption which has today crippled the country’s economy. Violence was never part of his vocabulary. As we remember the great Father Zimbabwe, we will always strive to return Zimbabwe to where and what it should be, that is at peace, equality and an economic powerhouse it was. This can only be achieved when we all revisit and embrace Dr Nkomo’s values of peace building and respect for human life. The liberator he was, he conserved human life and that must be emulated, even by the current regime in Zimbabwe that feds on blood of innocent citizens who have died of poverty induced hunger and from violence that has been meted on them since 1980 (Iphithule kaMaphosa, 2017).

I think that is how this article should end. Peace.

Reference:

Iphithule kaMaphosa – ‘ ZAPU commemorates Dr Joshua Nkomo, the President Zimbabwe never had’ (01.07.2017) link: http://bulawayo24.com/index-id-news-sc-press+release-byo-113199.html

Mawire, Gift – ‘Secret telegram that triggered Gukurahundi reveales Joshua Nkomo called Robert Mugabe a dog’ (16.11.2016) link: http://www.thezimbabwenewslive.com/zimbabwe-30252-secret-telegram-triggered-gukurahundi-reveales-joshua-nkomo-called-robert-mugabe-dog.html

Nkomo, Joshua – ‘Joshua Nkomo letter to Robert Mugabe from exile in the UK’ (24.12.2013) – Nkomo letter to Mugabe: “ INFORMATIVE LETTER TO PRIME MINISTER MUGABE’ (07.07.1983) link: https://www.google.no/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=6&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwip36LVruzXAhXmKJoKHcgWACUQFghHMAU&url=http%3A%2F%2Fnehandaradio.com%2F2013%2F12%2F24%2Fjoshua-nkomo-letter-to-robert-mugabe-from-exile-in-the-uk%2F&usg=AOvVaw3NKWJ6SwNORyTQ4AnGWQQb

Ndlovu-Gatsheni, S. and Willems, W. (2010). Reinvoking the past in the present: changing

identities and appropriations of Joshua Nkomo in post-colonial Zimbabwe. In: African

Identities 8(3): 191-208.

Sibanda, Eliakim M. – ‘The Contributions of Joshua Nkomo to the Liberation of Zimbabwe’ (2017), Cananda

UPI – ‘Opposition leader Joshua Nkomo accused the Zimbabwe government Sunday…’ (11.03.1984) link: https://www.upi.com/Archives/1984/03/11/Opposition-leader-Joshua-Nkomo-accused-the-Zimbabwe-government-Sunday/6579447829200/

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