Monday 4 July 2016. I do not usually begin my blog posts with a date, but I need to record this one. Something special is happening in Zimbabwe today. Citizens have stood up to the dictatorship and are protesting, mostly in Harare.
Sadly, I can’t be celebrating this phenomenal decision by Zimbabweans because I have been receiving video after video showing Zimbabwe Republic police brutally assaulting protesters in Mabvuku and Epworth.
The over zealousness of the police is not surprising because the government prioritized their salaries over other civil service sectors this month. Notably, all the state security agencies were given priority for salary payment amid the financial malaise that the country is grappling with.Robert Mugabe is a cunning architect of politics of patronage. He has, since he began tightening his grip on power, used different groups of significant people relevant to the security of the country to advance his own personal interests.
He dug up liberation war veterans from obscurity and used them to drive out white Zimbabwean farmers in 2000 in exchange for a war veterans compensation payout.
Throughout his reign of terror, which began in 2000, he has used state security agencies as he pleases, to terrorize people into silence. The role of the police, at least in a democracy, is to monitor people as they exercise their constitutional right to protest against injustice. But in Zimbabwe they serve Zanu pf.
It is therefore no surprise that the Robert Mugabe administration chose to deprive doctors who save lives, tactically putting police, army and state intelligence on top priority. By so doing, the government is not only offering motivation for police to please it but also blackmailing them into subservience and loyalty. I mean who wants to go hungry in the current Zimbabwe? Who wants to get fired or suspended?
In my previous post I discussed how the civil service sector can help remove the country from the grip of dictatorship by downing their tools. This is one of the watershed moments where the police can take the right side.
What the various policeman engaging in brutality need to realize is that at the end of the day they are just Zimbabweans. If this, and indeed that’s not a far fetched idea, government gets dislodged, some of the police should be prosecuted for crimes against humanity.
If that happens, Robert Mugabe or any of the rogue government will not be there to save them.