By Sij Ncube
Regional and international spot light is again refocusing on the Zimbabwe crisis with a vengeance but the state media and government spin-doctors insist on desperately camouflaging President Robert Mugabe over allegations of misrule despite clear signs the emperor has no clothes, analysts say.
Mugabe spin-doctors have been at the fore-front of defending and sometimes denying police brutality against citizens in the wake of protests against the Zanu PF leader’s suspected ill-health, a comatose economy, corruption and general poverty.
But apparently the propaganda over drive has been countered by an alert independent local, regional and international media, including the loathed social media, leaving spin-doctors in control of the state media in sixes and sevens.
The international community has also been unhelpful to the regime, spotlighting the crisis by issuing statements blasting police brutality and general bad governance under Mugabe’s stewardship.
Critics say continued speculation around Mugabe’s frequent trips to Asia to seek medical attention, his apparent disregard for court orders and continued denial of civil liberties has kept the Zimbabwean leader’s defenders busy.
Mugabe’s spokesman George Charamba and the Minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services Chris Mushowe’s frequent appearances in the state media in defence of the crumbling Zanu PF edifice was a typical case of people barking up the proverbial wrong tree as they should man up and tell “the emperor he has no clothes”.
Appearing on Zimbabwe Television’s Newshour early last week, Charamba was looking and sounding very edgy, unsettled, agitated, nervous and extremely angry.
Noted MDC-T spokesperson Obert Gutu, “He was sounding even more worried than some higher ranking Zanu PF regime politicians and apologists. I strongly suspect George knows something that some of us might not know. He’s an extremely worried man.”
Charamba intimated Mugabe would impose a state of emergency if the protests against his misrule continued.
On his part, Mushowe raved and ranted that the regime would come hard on citizens using social media to foment unrest, even threatening to arrest more journalists.
Incidentally, the state has since been busy bashing and arresting journalists going about their lawful duties.
Despite the arrests of the journalists attracting regional and international attention, the state media has refused to report on the issue, giving credence to assertions they were complicit in thecriminalisation of the profession.
Other Zanu PF critics attribute the propaganda over-drive in the state media to a realisation by Mugabe’s hangers-on the end is nigh despite the dilution of their propaganda by the international media and social media platforms.
The critics have been quick to point out that Charamba and Mushowe are fully alert that the liability does not end with Mugabe but also with the rest of the mandarins that supported his regime.
“This is why the younger generation of this kleptocratic government are very agitated these days. They have more to lose than these old men who have one leg in the grave.
“Their time for atonement is approaching rapidly and they, like Matemba fish, can see the epiglottis beckoning as the jaws of justice are rapidly closing. What goes around, almost always boomerangs,” commented Simbarashe Manhanga. Radio VOP