Of Coffee, Democracy, Voting and Elections

Of Coffee, Democracy, Voting and Election Results.

voting

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you it’s been a nail-biting roller-coaster of a week, waiting for the results of the harmonized election results held on Monday the 30th of July to be announced.

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you not be alarmed, I am safe and sound, and have had to answer the “Are you safe question?” to several people via phone calls, messages, emails, and DMs but to be honest the past couple of days have been hair-raising. You might have seen Zimbabwe, headlining the news, when the army clamped down on opposition party protesters in the city capital, demanding immediate release of unadultered election results by the electoral commission claiming the commission was delaying so it could “massage” the figures.

MDC Protest

The protest turned violent as protesters destroyed property; looting shops, setting fire to vehicles belonging to the ruling party and the military resorted with deadly force. Firing live ammunition into crowds leaving scores of people injured and several fatalities.

Military

If you were having coffee with me, this is the part you would ask me if you heard me correct that military personnel in a nation not at war opened fired on its civilian population. It’s hard to reconcile this image with how the military, just seven months earlier, in November had been on the side of the masses, in a historic seemingly bloodless coup resulting in Robert Mugabe resigning without a single bullet being fired in public.

Zim Coup

when The Army sided with the people

The official statement is that the protesters “overwhelmed the police who were spread thin due to them being stationed throughout the country to safeguard the polls and so the army was deployed.” This might be true but not entirely because on the fateful Wednesday I also happened to be in Harare CBD, and no I was not protesting, I was not even aware of the protests, maybe I should have checked my social media first, it might be full of misleading information but it’s one of the most reliable ways to find out if its safe to venture outside your neighbourhood and into the city.

If you were having coffee with me I would ask you, to imagine you were me, in the city’s central business district, not protesting minding your own business when suddenly: chaos and confusion as people run past you screaming and you don’t need anyone to tell you twice, you also run. Assimilating as you go along; the noxious tear gas fumes assaulting your nostrils, the distinctive sound of gun fire, even though you have never heard a gunshot in your life and you sometimes mistake the sounds of a car backfiring to gunshots when you hear an assault rifle being fired you can’t mistake for anything else…….

A lot of finger pointing is underway, from the opposition party leaders for inciting violence to the party supporters heading mindless calls to action; from the army over-reacting to the protestors being ungovernable and the truth, well the truth is an offspring of mistruth, half-truths meeting whispered conspiracies breeding in a silence where no good thing can flourish.

If you were having coffee with me I would tell you that the final presidential election results were announced after midnight on the 3rd of August with President elect Emmerson Mnangagwa of the ruling party ZANU PF winning 50.8% of the vote and Nelson Chamisa of the MDC Alliance opposition taking 44% of the polls and the remaining 5.2% split amongst the other 20 presidential candidates.

Walking in the streets of the capital city it’s hard to imagine something as monumental as presidential elections happened, no one is rejoicing, and everyone seems to be grieving, not only for the unfortunate souls, not only from the funerals of those who died on the Wednesday, not just faceless civilians, but people who had loved ones,

and also for the death of hope that had been birthed, still born, that this time around, maybe this time, things would be different……..

If you were having coffee with me I would mention these interesting quotes that I heard:

“its not the voting that counts, but the counting of votes…”

The force of will surpasses the force of will

Well if the polls are to be believed, then we live in a divided nation, where 49.2% of the population did not vote for the president elect, where there are more rural than urban voters in a tale of two voter pools, living with what seem to be completely different concerns and ideals and a diasporian population without a right to vote from their adoptive countries; and where a lot of work needs to be done to unite the population allow room to tolerate divergent views

If you were having coffee with me, I would ask you if you think democracy is a façade or that democracy is unAfrican? I heard some analysts on TV say that it’s a system that is counter to Africa’s Principle of Ubuntu I am because We Are, serving no one but interests of our colonial overlords in their quest to maintain control of Africa’s resources and controlling its finances.

diversity

If you were having coffee with me, I would tell you that I wish I could go to be bed and wake up later, much later, like in maybe five years, because in five years I will be old enough to also be a presidential candidate, if I was president I am sure the world be a better place…… well for me anyway it would be better.

~B

I have just answered a phone call from my mother for the umpteenth who calls every few hours to check if I am still alive and still ok, I should visit her soon and put her fears to rest, she worries so much I start worrying about her too………

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30 thoughts on “Of Coffee, Democracy, Voting and Elections

  1. I have been watching for news everywhere. After following you, after reading the Hairdresser Of Harare, after reading other bloggers, I found through you.. I had so much more of an interest than I would have a year ago. I can’t believe how hard it has been to even find news. This whole week has been an emotional roller coaster for me From the other side of the world. I can’t even begin to imagine how it’s been for Zimbabweans. The shootings – and I want to use a different word – have reduced me to tears. People shot in the back – dear God what kind of world is this?
    Stay strong. Stay true. Stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi there!!! Thank you for dropping by and, for paying an active attention, I appreciate you, in case I havent said it, let me saying it again…. ♥♥♥♥♥

      most of the things I share on here is just me trying to make sense of the the world around me, and my memories along with that, immortalising my thoughts in the only way I know how.

      Thank you for being part of this journey and on this rollercoaster ride with me,

      What kind of world of this, Dear God are you even there?

      ~B

      PS staying safe thanks

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve been watching the news and it hasn’t looked good. It is awful when a country’s troops fire upon its own people. I hope only the best for Zimbabwe. i know the economy there is awful and you all need relief. Anyway, glad you are safe! Sounds pretty scary.

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  3. Glad to hear you’re alright.
    When it comes to protesters, I hate when they turn violent. It defeats the whole purpose. Why loot and set things on fire? Why damage cars and stores? That is not the way to do things.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Beaton.
    You & your country have been on my mind all week. Am very glad you’re okay, but am sorry for how the election went both the vote & the violence
    One point in my of encouragement – yes God is there. I spoke with him just this morning.
    Please stay safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Gary
      Thank you for the encouragement, one of the questions I was asking myself on a sleepless night, was a question to the heavens, you know like hello God, its me, but of course you know who I am, are you out there?

      for now everything seems safe thank you
      ~B

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  5. Hi B, glad to hear you are safe. I have had very limited access to the net and only saw and heard what the TV news were saying… I pray for you all, stay safe and strong, ciao from Italy. 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi there!!!!
      Yeah I am good and so far it looks like everything a settling to a calm, I hope its unlike a calm before a storm but the good kind of calm that allow for hope and dreams
      ~B

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  6. This has been heartbreaking to watch and hear about. Democracy is a fragile thing. Hoping you and fellow countrymen and women will soon find your country peace and safety

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A well written account of a concerned observer; for that I thank you. I know so little of what goes on in your country. I’m glad you out ran the violence. Thank you. I’ll be more open to prayer for your country and you as an individual – also I have the heart of a mother – go see her if you can. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I think that democracy … demands patience and a desire to work toward the goals that serve all of the population. Altruism is truly a survival trait in the long run for continuing life.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Hi Beaton, I’m glad you are ok. I stay in a small town in Zimbabwe and I find it so hard to believe all this is happening in same country. It’s life as usual here, even as all hell was breaking loose in Harare, it was quiet here.

    Please see your mom, it will put her mind at rest but I can’t promise it will reduce the number of times she calls.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah like its like you would almost settle for them not going through the whole sham of an election and spare us the drama lol but hey we need to pretend to have semblance of constitution and a rule of law
      ~B

      Like

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