ZIMBABWE INVESTOR – Zimbabweans woke up Friday to shock news of the country’s new president Emmerson Mnangagwa having announced a cabinet oscillating between a reward for those that helped his ascendency to power and a recycling exercise of the same old and tired bunch who, bar a few new faces, were key players throughout the disastrous years of Zimbabwe’s economic ruin.
The cabinet line-up was far removed from what the euphoric population had expected and totally odds with the signals that were coming from the new president since taking over office. There had been an expectation of a complete break from the past yet the new man in charge appeared last night to indicate he will continue the legacy of his predecessor built on rewarding loyalty above anything else.
There has been widespread condemnation and disbelief that president Mnangagwa would rather squander so much goodwill he had accumulated since he took office by opting to reward loyalty ahead of getting the country back on its feet again. The promise of a fresh start seems to have been sucked out of the people overnight if the reaction, particularly on social media, is anything to go by.
Zimbabwe Twitter exploded in the early hours of the morning in reaction to the cabinet announcement.
“President Mnangagwa’s Cabinet is very disappointing. Largely the same people that caused this crisis have been recycled” Ncube twitted to his 113,000 followers adding, “The honey moon comes to an end and reality dawns. His concern seems to have been rewarding those who brought him to power and Zanu-PF unity”.
President Mnangagwa’s Cabinet is very disappointing. Largely the same people that caused this crisis have been recycled. The honey moon comes to an end and reality dawns. His concern seems to have been rewarding those who brought him to power and Zanu-PF unity. #Zimbabwe 👇🏿 pic.twitter.com/pGDz5t9EAH
— Trevor Ncube (@TrevorNcube) December 1, 2017
Equally disappointed was UK-based Zimbabwean entrepreneur Miles Mudzviti who noted, “People’s expectations and perceptions matter. Old wine in new bottles will not satisfy them, nor quench their thirst for true reform” in a philosophical Facebook post.
“Whoever advised ED on this cabinet is not for Zimbabwe or even the President” outspoken former ZANU (PF) member and now independent MP for Norton, Temba Mliswa lashed out on Twitter.
Whoever advised ED on this cabinet is not for Zimbabwe or even the President.
— Hon. Temba P. Mliswa (@TembaMliswa) December 1, 2017
The president appears to have done little to take away the skepticism of some who insisted the removal of Mugabe was a military coup by appointing two serving generals into his cabinet. Major-General Sibusiso Moyo who became the face of the military action that resulted in the resignation of long-serving Robert Mugabe when he appeared on the national ZTV to announce the army had moved to restore order, has been handed the Foreign Affairs portfolio. Air Marshal Perence Shiri has been appointed to head the ministry responsible for land and agriculture.
Former Finance Minister during the government of national unity between 2009 and 2013, Tendai Biti did not pull any punches.
“The reconsolidation of the military-state conflation is a betrayal of 18 November” Biti posted on his Twitter feed.
“The open flaunting of a securocratic junta construct is the greatest threat to this country s existence. The junta has no legitimacy, no moral or legal authority to exercise executive power”, he added.
The reconsolidation of the military -State conflation is a betrayal of 18 November. The open flaunting of a securocratic junta construct is the greatest threat to this country s existence.The junta has no legitimacy, no moral or legal authority to exercise executive power .
A glimmer of hope, some might say, was the appointment of Winston Chitando who till this government assignment has sat at the helm of Anglo-America’s Zimbabwe mining subsidiary Mimosa Holdings. He will no doubt bring private sector respectability to the cabinet line-up. Also appointed is Amon Murwira, a professor who holds a PhD in Geo-