PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe on Monday squandered an opportunity to bring together a nation torn asunder by the controversial July 31 elections, choosing instead to gloat over his disputed victory.
Addressing a clearly partisan Zanu PF crowd at the Heroes’ Acre in Harare, the 89-year-old Mugabe did not speak like a statesman who is about to assume a seventh consecutive presidential term.
The Zanu PF leader had nothing but insults for those questioning the way the harmonised elections were conducted.
“Those who cannot accept defeat are wasting their time,” Mugabe thundered.
“They can even go and hang if they want, but even dogs will not sniff at their carcasses.”
Besides reinforcing the belief that Zanu PF puts undue pressure on the country’s Judiciary to act in a partisan manner, Mugabe showed that he would not be a President for everyone.
MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai has the right to challenge the outcome of the elections in the courts if he has evidence that it was manipulated.
The kind of language used by Mugabe is likely to spark political violence given that Zimbabwe is in a delicate stage in the aftermath of the disputed elections.
Already there are reports of MDC-T supporters being targeted by their Zanu PF opponents in rural areas and such statements from people like Mugabe would further fuel the animosity.
Mugabe must let the courts decide the fate of Tsvangirai’s application based on the evidence he has put before the judges instead of trying to use his position to influence the judgment through inflammatory statements.
Zimbabwe is also a country that is desperate to be reintegrated into the community of nations and Mugabe must be demonstrating that his party has learnt something in the past four years where efforts were being made to re-engage the West.
Throwing insults at those countries that have pointed one or two inadequacies in our electoral system is no way of winning friends.