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Where are you Mr President?

Mr President, it did not take you long to address the nation following the initial lockdown back in March.

You did not just address the nation, you sow seeds of hope, you counselled your people, and even announced interventions to help your people through, including the infamous Mma Boi.

You are probably working hard with your Cabinet and COVID-19 Task Team on how to help Batswana get through the pandemic. You are surely concerned about Batswana, their jobs, their companies, their health and we expect you to address us soon!

But where are you when your neighbour, Zimbabwe is burning down my President? Mpuru o haretswe in case you are not aware, Mr President. Your counterpart, Edson Mnangagwa and his cronies are brutalising our fellow brothers and sisters.

Remember how they are so dear to us? You know they always run to us right when they are troubled. If we do not tell Zimbabwe that we are not happy and act, do you know they will border jump and our battle against COVID- 19 could face greater resistance?

Mr President, yourself, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) and the African Union should urgently and publicly speak out against Zimbabwe government’s crackdown on peaceful anti-corruption protests that took place on July 31, 2020.

In case you are not aware, Zimbabwean authorities have arrested at least 60 people, including novelist Tsitsi Dangarembga and the opposition MDC Alliance spokesperson, Fadzayi Mahere in connection with the protests.

Subsequently, 16 people were injured and required medical attention. Dangarembga

was released on bail the next day. This was not the end of it as many influential people including journalists continue to bear the brunt of Mnangagwa’s misrule.

We have seen various players, civil society and many others speak out on the tragedy, but we are worried that our leader is stone silent. And we know how much you hate corruption at least in terms of your political public pronouncements. You mentioned it many times that you would crack a whip on corruption and we expect you to speak out against it even in Zimbabwe.

Southern African Anti-Corruption Network is one network of civil societies that see that yourself and other SADC heads are turning a blind eye on the situation and therefore call on you to lead our nation “to stand in solidarity with the people of Zimbabwe at this time and express support for those in the media and civil society who continue to act in the best interests of a country and people already struggling under the yoke of a weak economy, prolonged food security, runaway inflation, high unemployment and rampant poverty”.

Mr President, just tell Mnangagwa that he cannot achieve peace and unity by brutalising his fellow citizens. Tanki Tautona.

Today’s thought

“Anyone who unleashes soldiers on innocent unarmed people would have declared those people an enemy of the State. You don’t deserve my respect,”

– Julius Malema




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