Bernard Bwoni Correspondent
African Union chairman, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe is an extraordinary socio-political and economic engineer, just what the continent needs and deserves right now. He has shouldered and continues to shoulder the burden of the African case with unparalleled resolve to see the continent achieve total economic emancipation and political independence.
Zimbabwe under President Mugabe has posed a real and direct threat to an economic system which only functions smoothly when resource-abundant African countries remain confined to the edges and the lower ranks of any meaningful global economic activity.
This is the same economic system that flourished on the back of cheap slave labour and free resources during slavery and colonialism respectively.
President Mugabe represents what can accurately be described as the last outpost and final frontier for genuine African Renaissance. The childish excitement that gripped social media about his trip on a poorly laid carpet and the associated media mass hysteria is not an attack on Mugabe the man per se, but Mugabe the ideas which resonate well in Africans continent-wide.
President Mugabe assuming the AU chairmanship poses a present and direct threat to covert imperialism and the threat exist not necessarily from Mugabe the man but the big ideas that he has instilled and continue to sow in present and future African generations.
The attacks on President Mugabe, the man, are a reaction to the AU chairmanship because the principles he stands for will now cascade signals continent wide that the historically biased socio-economic structure can be challenged and dismantled by a united Africa.
He represents real hope for total economic independence that is meaningful for present and future generations. It is important to emphasise the word âmeaningfulâ here and not the misleading narrative of political independence that most if not all countries on the continent had to settle for whilst neglecting real economic freedom.
However, no amount of tampering with media headlines will change the fact that Robert Mugabe is a visionary. This legendary son of Africa commands African respect from Cape to Cairo and the people of Africa are well aware of who their real heroes are.
The Mugabe vision is not going to be derailed by a trip on a poorly laid carpet. Here is a visionary who is leading Africa out of the racist ICC kangaroo court and coming up with the African engineered idea of an African court to deal with African affairs manned by Africans themselves not some fresh-faced condescending newly qualified lawyers who have never set foot on the continent!
The assault on President Mugabeâs ideas is clandestine affair engineered miles away from the continent with some misguided African elements and local cheerleaders doing the footwork under the gullible banner of all the hollow high-sounding themes of âhuman rightsâ, âlegitimacyâ and ârule of lawâ. It is no longer just about Mugabe the man, but the deeper meaning behind Robert Mugabeâs call to not just settle for political independence but total economic emancipation. These are the values and principles that resonate with indigenous population in Zimbabwe and continent-wide.
It is that belief and lifelong commitment to liberating the black indigene and the resolve to place African resources back into the hands of their rightful owners that invite the profound and unwarranted hatred from the coalition of the erstwhile architects of the twin wrongs of slavery and colonialism and their local lapdogs we have come to call the opposition.
President Mugabe has remained guided by those principles that put Africa ahead of all else and the frenzy that is sweeping across the African continent is a prelude to Africaâs reorganisation and re-emergence as the force it definitely is and should have been centuries ago had its development not been dislocated by the evils of slavery, imperialism, colonialism, apartheid and neo-colonialism.
Africa has to start serving divorce papers to the doomed marriage it continues to endure unnecessarily with its erstwhile colonisers and their allies. This marriage ended many years ago and in the case of Zimbabwe arms had to be used to get rid of this unfair and unfaithful partner. There is no point in sharing a bed with these strange bedfellows who you know for definite will easily knife you in your sleep for self-preservation and self-benefit at some point. This marriage is over and Africa is going to have to go it alone and those who seek to aid and assist will have to do so not to just exploit the continentâs abundant natural resources but to respect mutually beneficial engagement.
President Mugabe represents the unique brand of Pan-African cadres at the core of this conscious and principled pursuit of the African regeneration and renaissance. The African quest to seek divorce from the undignified one-sided and overly dependent union must not be viewed as pursuing an isolationist course but a positive move towards mutually favourable development partnerships. It would not be dishonest to suggest that partnerships with the West have been exclusively disastrous, their presence unfortunately has historically brought about conflict and chaos to the inhabitants of the continent and that cannot be an accident but carefully calculated to enable unrestrained exploitation of the continentâs abundant natural resources. There is nothing called charity in this world and my beautiful sister Dambisa Moyo put it aptly in her book âDead Aidâ.
The quest for genuine economic freedom for the continent will remain ingrained in this generation and many generations to come unless these historically and racially skewed constructs which continue to relegate black Africans to the bottom of the economic core are dismantled completely.
The illusion that once people have âfood on the tableâ then the agitation will stop is just but what it is – an illusion.
The very reason why President Mugabeâs name is synonymous with the âinternational mediaâ as the sole cause of Zimbabweâs economic downturn is a direct assault and attempt to extinguish the visionary flame he set in Zimbabwe and across the continent. The people of Zimbabwe and Africa subscribe to this vision and what they all see in the Mugabe vision is the very same thing those who went into social media mass meltdown mode see as well. The difference is that those who despise President Mugabe do so because his vision is running opposite to their exploitation-packaged ideologies. It is interesting to note that our beautiful neighbours to the south are mulling over the idea of a fast track land reform.
The Zimbabwe land reform programme is a beckon of hope for those indigenous black Africans that history has forever forsaken to a lifestyle of poverty inside a resource-abundant continent like Africa. South Africa will have to go through the mire and mud Zimbabwe went through to wrestle her lands from a system that only seek to preserve itself for the benefit a minority on racial grounds. The fact of the matter is that there is no other route to land reform in Africa except for the Zimbabwe Model. Anything else is childâs play!
The fact of the matter is that the President Mugabeâs ideas are here to stay. These are ideas that know no boundaries and they will continue to arouse curiosity and interest in African minds, to challenge and to provoke minds of the historically deprived indigene until lives have been enhanced and upgraded.
Bwoni is a political writer, an agricultural economist and consultant based in the UK.