By Jonathan Moyo
THE saying that when things appear to be going better, you have overlooked something summarises the mood of Zimbabweans who, while hoping the new political dispensation and economic revival will get better, fear that their optimism overlooks the danger that the policy treachery of Finance Minister Tendai Biti could plunge the country back into the abyss unless something is done to expose him and his external regime-change handlers who are busy setting up a parallel government in Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s office via a web of subversive NGOs.
Minister Biti’s dangerous treachery was demonstrated yet again on Friday when he was quoted by a local weekly scandalously maligning Zimbabwe as “a poor little struggling failed state” with “a debt of over US$5 billion largely caused by mismanagement, corruption and theft”.
While it was bad for Minister Biti to use such inflammatory and false language unbefitting of a minister of finance, it was worse that he spoke from Istanbul in Turkey where the IMF is holding its annual meetings which other finance ministers typically use to defend and promote their countries.
It is no wonder that the one question that is now on the lips of business leaders and prospective investors is about the extent to which Biti is a competent and serious minister of finance. All countries have governments made up of politicians who have differences with their colleagues in government or their parties and competing parties but a government minister, especially one responsible for finance, has an absolute responsibility to discharge collective responsibility and to defend and promote his country’s economic interests, especially when he is outside its borders.
The fact that Minister Biti used Turkish soil at an important IMF annual meeting to denigrate his country as “a poor little struggling failed state” clearly proves beyond any reasonable doubt that he is in government in order to destroy it from within as part of a sinister regime change agenda authored and funded by hostile external interests.
In fact, Minister Biti’s scandalous vilification of Zimbabwe as “a poor little struggling failed state” is a self-fulfilling regime-change prophecy whose footprints have become clearer and clearer since the formation of the coalition government on 13 February.
Minister Biti’s catalogue of malicious footprints in his misguided journey towards collapsing the Zimbabwean economy to justify his warped view supported by his regime-change handlers that Zimbabwe is “a poor little struggling failed state” includes the following:
- Minister Biti’s dogmatically irrational stance that he would rather commit suicide than allow the return of the Zimbabwe dollar;
- Minister Biti’s description of paltry allowances of up to US$170,0 paid to civil servants as salaries when the World Bank and other donors are paying discriminatory salaries to the MDC T parallel government ranging between US$700 and US$7,000;
- Minister Biti’s blocking of the utilistion of US$510 million from the IMF intended to stimulate productivity and shore up demand not only to manage the effects of the current global recession but also to mitigate the impact of illegal economic sanctions over the years;
- Minister Biti’s shocking proposal for Zimbabwe to humiliate itself and confirm a hopeless status that he wishes upon the country as “a poor little struggling failed state” by declaring itself to be a “Heavily Indebted Poor Country” (HIPC); and
- Minister Biti’s use of foul tactics from the now discredited so-called Washington Consensus to block lines of credit from Afreximbank and PTA Bank totalling some US$800 million intended for the private sector at a time when the country cannot attract international financing due to illegal American and European financial sanctions.
Despite these compelling footprints of regime change which have derailed economic recovery in Zimbabwe and maybe because of their destructive consequences on peace and stability in the country, Minister Biti was this weekend declared by the IMF networks of Anglo-Americans and their allies who specialise in the destabilisation of developing countries to be “the best Finance Minister in Africa”.
Apart from insulting Africans, this creepy distinction is very much similar to a litany of unworthy human rights and media awards typically given to pliable sell-outs who, like Minister Biti, have no shame or qualms about using global fora to decampaign their country by denigrating it as “undemocratic and corrupt” or as ” a poor little struggling failed state”.
Otherwise it is astounding how a manifestly unqualified and reckless Minister of Finance who is a laughing stock in his own country can be described as the “best minister of finance in the whole of Africa” when he has been in office for less than eight months, has not yet presented a full budget and has spent his tenure settling personal scores with the Governor of the central bank.
Even by his own weird standards, it is hard to imagine that Minister Biti, who showed during his presentation of the midterm budget last July that he does not know the difference between “exercise” and “excise” duty, would believe in his heart of hearts that he is “the best minister of finance in Africa” ahead of the likes of South Africa’s Trevor Manuel and his able successor to mention just two telling examples.
It is very clear that, like the scandalous human rights and media awards given to all sorts of sell-outs with no professional achievement to speak of, Minister Biti’s dubious award is designed to support his footprints of regime change whose agenda is being pursued by the United States and the European Union through the IMF among a host of multilateral institutions and NGOs.
While Minister Biti’s footprints of regime change are now clear as a matter of public concern, what has remained blurred and unexamined are their origins, funding and source of organisational management and coordination. In other words, it is still not clear as to who is behind Minister Biti’s breathtaking treachery.
But new and dramatic if not treasonous pointers are emerging about the dark and hostile forces behind his footprints of regime change not only given his scandalous award as the “best minister of finance in Africa” but also following recent revelations whose veracity has not been challenged by anyone that the MDC T is running a parallel government through Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office with bureaucratic incumbents who earn between US$700 and US$7,000 top-up monthly salaries when other civil servants are earning paltry monthly allowances of not more than US$170.
It has already been established beyond disputation that the so-called World Bank Multi-Donor Trust Fund has been bankrolling huge salaries and programmes of MDC T activists under the guise of supporting technical experts in Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office.
It has also been established beyond any question that the Prime Minister’s office publishes a partisan Newsletter about programmes and activities of the parallel government which have nothing to do with the legitimate and lawful coalition government.
Furthermore, it has been established without doubt that the Prime Minister’s office has secured several shadow offices of the parallel government in Harare and Bulawayo outside the Cabinet process and that some donor agencies like USAID have deployed their personnel, such as Jacob Mafume, to those illegal offices to link up with tens of thousands of workers, activities and programmes of some over 2,300 NGOs across the country whose unaccountable donor funding since the signing of the GPA now hovers around US$500 million.
Whereas the key individuals running the parallel government in Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office have been named, the key operatives behind these individuals and their nefarious activities, which include alleging that Minister Biti is the “best minister of finance in Africa”, have not been identified yet their identification would shed more light on the shenanigans that are at play in the pursuit of regime change in Zimbabwe.
Central to understanding who these operatives are and their mission is the fact that even though the MDC T has won electoral votes which must be acknowledged, especially but not only in urban areas, the party which is now in government as one of the three ruling parties is actually a foreign created, foreign funded and foreign managed regime-change project.
Although this has been said before, what has been little understood is that the MDC T, initially as an opposition party and now as part of the coalition government, outsources practically everything about itself from ideological principles, policy positions and strategies, election slogans and campaign methods, political organisation and even leadership itself.
Like the MDC T itself, the parallel government operating in Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office is a regime change project of the American-run Freedom House directed by the International Republican Institute (IRI) of the American Republican party coordinated by the American Embassy in Pretoria under the supervision of Melinda Faris who is a senior American intelligence operative and is widely known among MDC T activists who have gone through her dirty hands.
The IRI is chaired by Senator John McCain, who lost the presidential election to Barrack Obama. A significant engagement of Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s visit to the United States earlier this year was a pivotal meeting with McCain whose sum and substance was to review and plan IRI programmes in support of the MDC T’s parallel government initiative as the final strategy of seeking regime change in Zimbabwe from within the belly of the government itself.
Regime change programmes in Zimbabwe initiated and coordinated by Melinda Faris from the United States Embassy in Pretoria through a range of NGOs include training of trainers in small groups at a time to undertake covert election campaign using the constitution-making process and such activities as the ongoing MDC T’s so-called consultation of grassroots on whether to remain in the coalition government.
Among other things, the trainees, who are drawn from district, provincial and national levels, are being taught how to take positions to influence the State, government, Zanu PF, traditional leaders and local government structures ahead of the elections whenever they are held.
The training is given to small groups of 15 to 20 activists at a time who are paid a daily allowance of R1,000 over six days and involves tactical material on how to takeover power from within the system and modules on political strategy, political engagement, political communication in rural and high density areas, political warfare, psychological warfare, electioneering and tactics on “how to manage a dictatorship” and “how to set the national agenda by feeding false stories into the international media” especially ahead of key regional, continental and global events or meetings.
Over the last two or so months when the parallel government has been particularly active, about eight groups have been trained in Harare, Bulawayo, Johannesburg and Pretoria. Although the trainers are invariably white and include the likes of Janet Cherry, in Bulawayo the training is coordinated by Kudzayi Kakwangiri who is head of Radio Dialogue.
A constant feature in the training programmes, which has become the lifeline of the parallel government in Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office, is the presence of US Embassy officials with American intelligence links. Most of the activities take place in Johannesburg and Pretoria under the nose of SADC’s powerhouse whose intelligence system is pretty vast, although the last two months have seen an increase of activities inside Zimbabwe.
There have been training programmes in Botswana including the infamous trip there by MDC M rebels who were organised and funded by Freedom House to secure their support for the MDC-T candidate for the Speaker of Parliament. In February 2006, Zambian authorities deported Tsvangirai and his American intelligence handlers from Livingstone where they had hoped to set-up a political training base to use for managing Matabeleland.
Although the World Bank Multi Donor Trust Fund has been reported as the purse of the parallel government, the real money for the effort is being channelled through an organisation called Institute for a Democratic Alternative for Zimbabwe (IDAZIM) funded by the United States and the European Union and has offices in Pretoria and Johannesburg.
IDAZIM was created with USAID funds under something called Open Society Initiatives for Southern Africa (OSISA) operating from South Africa through a programme managed by Deprose Muchena, who used to be with USAID in Harare.
The head of IDAZIM is Davie Malungisa and the organisation’s democracy and governance programme that is active behind the parallel government is managed by Joy Mabenge who works closely with Arnold Tsunga, a trustee of a pirate radio station called Voice of the People (VOP) and the founding chairman of Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition whose work used to be coordinated by Jacob Mafume, before he moved into the US Embassy in Harare and now to Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s office where he is coordinating IDAZIM funding and activities in support of the parallel government.
Tsunga, who is currently with the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) where his mission is to soil Zimbabwe’s human rights standing, is the point person for the external side of things. Mafume and Tsunga, who are friends and key legs of the parallel government initiative, have survived their roles despite having been embroiled in all sorts of scandals some of which are now boiling close to the surface.
In a nutshell, the nexus of the forces behind the parallel government is made up of IDAZIM, IRI and Freedom House all operating from South Africa. IDAZIM manages staff deployments and the funding including paying the ridiculously huge salaries to the likes of Andrew Chadwick (Tsvangirai’s communications director and former British journalist), IRI handles policy issues and Freedom House deals with political organisation, strategy and covert election campaigns.
Including everyone in the Prime Minister’s office, Eddie Cross and Roy Bennett, there are two deputy ministers who are a close part of this nexus and they are Jameson Timba (Deputy Minister of Media, Information and Publicity and Jessie Fungai Majome (Deputy Minister Justice and Legal Affairs).
There is nothing that the MDC-T does or says which is not a product of the right wing and intolerant threesome of IDAZIM, IRI and Freedom House whose brain box is Melinda Faris and whose agenda in Zimbabwe is regime change.
Minister Biti’s outrageous policy pronouncements are a product of this powerful threesome whose structure, purpose and funding have thus far gone unexamined to the detriment not only of national security in Zimbabwe but also the development of democracy itself.
For example, this threesome is using its paid media mouthpieces to create the silly impression that anything and everything critical of the MDC T, such as exposing the party’s parallel government, is hate-speech while all sorts of insults against Zanu PF, including calling the party’s youth “thugs” by definition, is love-speech.
Against this backdrop, Zimbabweans must be optimistic about the changes taking place in our country and support positive initiatives without overlooking the clear and present dangers posed by Minister’s Biti’s policy treachery which the Anglo-Americans are celebrating as the best in Africa, while their evil threesome of IDAZIM, IRI and Freedom House are busy setting up and funding a parallel government whose mission is to guarantee regime change at the next general election.