Bullet brain – Zimbabwe Vigil Diary
After 35 years of Mugabe, Zimbabweans will not be surprised at Sepp Blatter still clinging on to office as president of FIFA. He is a soul mate of Mugabe’s in corruption and manipulation.
One of Mugabe’s most devoted disciples is Transport and Infrastructural Development minister Obert Mpofu. He has not had the opportunity to sell the world cup to a desert country with little history of football. But his announcement that the government is planning to bring in bullet trains shows a similar level of delusion.
Responding to a question in parliament about what the government was doing to resurrect the moribund railways, Mr Mpofu said that several investors were queuing up to finance the bullet trains. Even Mr Blatter would hesitate to travel on a Zimbabwean train if he knew that, because of a communications failure, train drivers are reduced to leaving explosive charges on the tracks to alert others to a possible problem.
Bullet trains would certainly be one answer to the potholes in the roads but the Vigil doubts that Mpofu will be able to catapult Zimbabwe railways into the front rank of international transport systems. We fear his vision will end up much like Zambia’s space project a few years ago, which left the Zambianaut dangling from the branches of a tree.
But we see why he is attracted to bullet trains travelling at more that 300 miles per hour. He has a vast commercial empire, including not only mines but also properties in towns ranging from Harare to Bulawayo and the Victoria Falls. A bullet train would enable him to collect his rents and return to headquarters on the same day to consider further looting opportunities. And think how the country would benefit fromvendors being able to go from Chitungweza to the Harare Central Business District in a matter of minutes.
The Vigil doubts that Mpofu’s delusional project will persuade the US and French business delegations converging on Harare to give him some money. The government would be best advised to hide him away. After all, there is a possibility that President Mugabe will be at home to receive the delegations after his trip to Nigeria – the latest of a never-ending series of foreign jaunts which have seen him clocking up this year more air miles than a Boeing pilot (https://nehandaradio.com/2015/05/10/shock-as-mugabe-blows-50-million/v – Shock as Mugabe blows $50 million).
· People at the Vigil expressed their disagreement with President Mugabe’s racist comments reported in last week’s diary and it was agreed that the matter would be discussed next week at a meeting of the Zimbabwe Action Forum.
· On Saturday 6th June there is to be a protest outside Yarlswood Detention Centre about the conditions there. Our supporter Tryness Ncube is speaking at the event. For more information see: http://cityofsanctuary.org/2015/05/14/call-for-city-of-sanctuary-to-join-refugee-women-outside-yarls-wood-on-saturday-6th-june/.
· Thanks to Henrietta Mlambo who was in charge of the front table today. She was helped by Tafadzwa Mushakwe, Nobukhosi Moyo, Gladys Nyathi and Thandiwe Moyo.
For latest Vigil pictures check: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zimbabwevigil/. Please note: Vigil photos can only be downloaded from our Flickr website.
FOR THE RECORD: 32 signed the register.