By Crisford Chogugudza

Mass media reform is a crucial aspect of democratic transition in a post dictatorship era and accomplishing this task is not only a Herculean task but a difficult process that can make or break individual political careers. In Zimbabwe, a country characterised by a monolithic media dispensation for many decades, the partisan media has enjoyed an unlimited propensity of carefully orchestrated character assassinations and unduly personality cult that has made Zimbabwe one of the most hated places on earth.

By Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

Despite the unprecedented overdrive of its diplomatic pressure on African heads of regime during the recent African Union assembly in Egypt, Britain failed abysmally to persuade the summit to condemn Zimbabwe’s June 2008 rigged elections. For the Brown administration, this failure was a disappointing anticlimax in a season of sustained publicity blitz across Britain in which the state and media found a rare common purpose and a convergence of opinion on the subject of the demonisation of Robert Mugabe. The typecasting was unmistakeably swift and assured: Mugabe became the purveyor or indeed inventor of election rigging in Africa, the grotesque human rights violator, the quintessential, fiendishly-sutured African dictator. Even provincial newspaper editors and commentators as well as their radio and television counterparts, usually concerned with more mundane local issues, became instant experts on Mugabe and Mugabeism – such was the frenzy of the times! Thanks to this bizarre British offering of “African history” of the past 50 years, the plaque of shame that lists the cabal of Africa’s notorious heads of regime and genocidist personages of the age appear casually erased for the occasion: Muhammed, Gowon, Danjuma, al-Bashir, Idi Amin, Mengistu, Bokassa, Awolowo, Buhari, Compaoré, Aminu, Eyadema, Haruna, Mobutu, Toure, Enaharo, Abubakar, Akinrinade, Patassé, Obasanjo, Are, King, Habré, Adekunle, Ayida, Ali, Babangida …

By Crisford Chogugudza

When Mandela said at his 90th birthday in London that the Zimbabwe crisis was a result of tragic failure of leadership, many hastily concluded that he meant the failure of Mugabe’s leadership, which was true to a point. Mandela’s words had wider implications on both the Zimbabwean leadership and International leadership. Cognisant of the fact that Mandela was literally ‘coerced’ by the BBC to comment on Zimbabwe, as indeed has happened to most African leaders visiting the UK today, he did not give further details about what he exactly meant by ‘tragic failure of leadership’. Those who know Mandela well will confess that he is a leader of rare intellectual qualities, who uses metaphors as a way of expressing his opinions. His messages resonate well with sensible people, the oppressed and disenfranchised.

By Crisford Chogugudza

For a few decades now, Africa has been suffering from persistent food crises due to a number of factors most of which could be avoided. In global terms, food security is perceived to be a basic human right and one which should be defended at all costs. Ironically, in Africa, food insecurity is more prevalent now than ever, with a more hostile environment, many people undernourished and severely dependent on food aid. However, some believe that the underlying cause is just as much persistent poverty as poor productivity. Many agricultural experts blame a variety of factors for the increasingly depressive food insecurity in Africa, and these include the following among other; natural disasters, poor agricultural policies, war and civil conflicts and most importantly a massive lack of interest by the west to invest significantly in African agricultural projects. There is now overwhelming consensus of public opinion amongst agricultural experts that Africa is hypothetically able to feed itself. Africa could even export food if right agricultural policies supported by long term western financial support are put in place. A new package of support modelled in the shape of the acclaimed Marshall plan is urgently required to revitalise the agricultural sector in Africa especially food production.

By Crisford Chogugudza

The political paralysis in Zimbabwe is increasingly becoming a concerning issue not only for Africa but for the entire international community. Zimbabwe is an important member of SADC politically and economically and the collapse of its economy and state can have grotesque consequences for the region. There is currently no way forward as to how to effectively deal with the crisis brought about by President Mugabe’s controversial election on the 27th June 2008. The cost of the political impasse in Zimbabwe has been enormous and the longer it takes to reach a sustainable solution the more Zimbabweans continue to suffer. Apartheid South Africa and the notorious Rhodesian governments were all brought down through negotiations and the same applies to the post independence Zimbabwe crisis. Any suggestions that war and sanctions will bring change in Zimbabwe are unrealistic and ill thought out.

Lincoln, the nation’s 16th president, served between 1861 and 1865. Lincoln was said to have been the illegitimate son of an African man, according to Leroy’s findings. Lincoln had very dark skin and coarse hair and his mother allegedly came from an Ethiopian tribe. His heritage fueled so much controversy that Lincoln was nicknamed “Abraham Africanus the First” by his opponents.

Tomorrow the 4th of November 2008, Obama will be elected the 44th President of the United States. Some say this makes him the first Black President of the United States others say no. Obama Wouldn’t Be First Black President [EDITOR'S NOTE]

There is growing evidence and realisation by Zimbabweans that the ‘ruling’ Zanu PF party does not have the moral basis to extend their rule even if they ‘win’ the next run off election. Those who back Zanu PF and are true to themselves should be reminded that protracted one party rule has the effect of creating resistance on the minds of the ruled especially when the leadership becomes lethargic, corrupt and irresponsible. In Zimbabwe’s case the people generally feel neglected, abandoned and betrayed in extreme cases. The people’s distrust of government is growing everyday and inevitably this is good news for the opposition leader.

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