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David Chimedu

The challenge we face in Zimbabwe is that, unless we transform our political culture, we will continue to see the economics of poverty and oppression. What happened to our once beautiful and productive country? Why has one regime tolerated the decline of their country while others have worked for prosperity? The answer is simple. Zimbabwe has been turned into a predatory state by the evil regime of ZANU PF. The elites have taken large amount of money or investable surplus for their own gain in a way that impedes upon economic transformation. Those in control plunder without regards to the welfare of the citizens.

The main reason why Zimbabwe is in this state is because wealth comes from political power,which contradicts with the Marxist assumption that political power comes from wealth. To get a better understanding we need to revisit a crucial historical event which is the Lancaster House Agreement in 1979. The elites agreed that black people will ascend to positions of political leadership while white people would continue to enjoy the ownership of the means of economic production. The result of this agreement was that, black people as the majority, the state turned into the best way to acquire wealth due to the effective exclusion from the private sector. The existing political elite were also dependant on the state for wealth generation and clinging on to the state power turned into the regime's main objective. The ZANU Pf regime systematically used and abused state resources and power for private gain and achievement of political goals for their clientele.

Zimbabwe has become one of the most corrupted country in the world, which allowed state officials to secure enormous personal profits without repercussions. 15 billion dollars went missing and no one was arrested. Jonathan Moyo embezzled more than 400 thousand dollars from Zimbabwe Development Fund ZIMDEF and he is tweeting his way out everyday. The Minister of Local Government built a mansion on a $4000 salary and to date no one knows what happened to the Chiadzwa Community Share trust funds. The list is long. This is the reason why in Zimbabwe, wealth stems from political power. The nation is now a predatory state where the best means for wealth generation is the state itself. The policies implemented by the ZANU Pf regime in order to cement their rule Internally, led to the downfall of the country. One such policy is the Indegenisation and Empowerment policy.Another is the Fast Track Land Reform which aimed at restoring political hegemony out of fear of opposition or economic elites. The other misguided initiative include the DRC war in 2002, and resulting hyperinflation and operation Murambatsvina (Clean up the Mess). These misguided policies strongly contributed to the country's demise executed by non other than Robert Mugabe himself. As if it's not enough, it is narrowmindedness that when the country's economy is on its knees, when the government is failing to pay the civil servants their monthly salaries, Mugabe has decided to go on holiday in Asia,taking away more than 4 million dollars in cash from the Treasury.

Does he care about the suffering people of Zimbabwe? Does he even care that he is now too old to run This country?Instead the revenue collected by the government from ZIMRA and ZINARA which should be directed towards critical needs like Health, Education and road Maintenance, is raided by the President and his wife who has made headlines for being a compulsive shopper and having pointless trips. Can Zimbabwe really develop with this kind of leadership. Zimbabwe is falling apart, not because of war and violence but by utterly being unable to take advantage of society's huge potential for growth, condemning the citizens to a lifetime of poverty.

Whats tragic is that this Failure is by design. Zimbabwe is collapsing because it is being ruled by what I call Extractive Economic Institutions which Destroys incentives, discourage Innovations and sap the talent off its citizens by creating a tilted playing field and robbing them off opportunities. These institutions are not in place By mistake but on purpose. They are there for the benefits of the elites who gain much from extraction, whether in the form of valuable minerals, forced labour, or protected monopolies at the expense of society. Such elites also benefit from rigged elections, wielding their power to tilt the system for their benefit. ZANU Pf doesn't want to Embrace new technology. What kind of a nation wants to enact a bill that ban social media. This gives the elites a big incentive to try and stop the march on Progress. It's good for them but not for society.

Whenever you come up with new ideas for the development of the nation, you become the enemy of the state. Until the opposition work together and form a strong coalition against the evil regime of ZANU PF, Zimbabweans will continue to suffer. If politicians have Failed to solve this crisis in Zimbabwe maybe it's time to introduce the National Transtional Authority NTA to take over because Zimbabweans are tired of listening to opposition parties criticising ZANU Pf without giving an alternative strategy of development. This is the best time to kick out ZANU Pf because they have failed. They are busy fighting each other and they don't have anyone capable of leading the party after Robert Mugabe. That is our greatest strength as opposition. The more we work together the more chances we have of achieving our goal. Another Zimbabwe is definitely possible.

By Tendai Mazenge 
PDP Secretary for Policy, Harare Province

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