The Zimbabwean elections, held on July 30, have come and gone, but almost a month down the line, the country is still at a standstill, thanks to the court challenge by the MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa who contested results of the poll, thus stalling the inauguration of President Emmerson Mnangagwa who was declared the winner by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission.
While the opposition had every right to approach the courts to address their grievances in accordance with the country’s constitution, we feel there is no need for politicians to continue holding the country to ransom.
Zimbabweans are tired of politics and have suffered for a long time as politicians played ping-pong with their lives.
Even neighbours in the SADC region, most of whom host millions of economic refugees who have fled from home since early 2000s to look for the proverbial greener pastures, can no longer fathom this and would want a stable Zimbabwe that joins the community of nations and forge ahead with its economic programmes.
Last week, SADC leaders who gathered in Windhoek, Namibia, called upon all stakeholders in Zimbabwe to remain calm while the legal process regarding the outcome of the elections was being considered by the courts, and to respect the will of people of Zimbabwe.
They also urged the international community to lift all sanctions against Zimbabwe, and support the country in her economic and social development efforts.
We therefore expect the Zimbabwean political players to abide by the outcome of the court process and for those powers that had imposed sanctions on the country to heed SADC’s call and remove those punitive sanctions.
We agree with the country’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Dr Sibusiso Moyo who said in Namibia last week that Zimbabwe is ready to play its part in the SADC region, not as an agenda item, but as a driver so that the region becomes what it is supposed to be.
Indeed, Zimbabwe has been on the agendas of SADC and other foreign powers such as the United States of America and the European Union for a long time and the sooner it is removed from these agendas, the better for its people and the SADC region as a whole.
There is more work to be done in terms of uniting the people of Zimbabwe and restoring its economy to its former glory. But for this to happen, those who have lost the elections must accept the outcome and move on, hoping that they will get it right next time. They must accept the outcome of the ruling of the Constitutional Court and allow Zimbabweans to be led by the people they have chosen.
And those chosen to lead the nation certainly have a huge task to revive the economy, spruce up the infrastructure, create employment and end poverty. We must embrace the mantra “Zimbabwe is Open for Business” and relegate politics to the back burner.