Zimbabwe Political Crisis

Stockholm, Sweden 2016

A seminar on Zimbabwe’s Political Crisis was organized by Silc (Swedish International Liberal Centre) and Palmecenter (Olof Palme International Center) with theme "No Democracy without Democrats”. The seminar focused mainly on the political issues surrounding Zimbabwe. The seminar took place on the 14th of November 2016 at the Swedish Parliament. Attending this seminar were some members of the Swedish parliament, Diplomats and others who were interested in learning about the crisis in Zimbabwe.

Book presentation

"As you find Zimbabwe's Crisis, the struggle remains unresolved"

David Coltart, a human right activist and a founding member of Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), presented his recently published book (The Struggle Continues - 50 years of Tyranny in Zimbabwe).

Mr. Coltart, during his presentation focused on some key factors which according to him were key indicators for the imbalance in Zimbabwe. "As you find Zimbabwe crisis, the struggle remains unresolved".

He also pointed out during his presentation that Zimbabwe is currently facing its worst crisis in the country’s history and identified that there is a complete lack of democracy in the country. He emphasized that Zimbabwe has a confusing political environment where the opposition parties are facing their worst-case scenario where they are unable to provide leadership and therefore remain weak to oppose the leading party lead by President Robert Mugabe, the ZANU-PF.

During the presentation, Mr. Coltar mentioned some of the distractions caused by the so called ISIS, other militant and terrorist groups around the world having a devastating effect on the local community. He said much attention have been focused on the other side of the world and there is a need for Sweden and the EU to also pay attention to what is currently happening in the communities of Zimbabwe.

An alternative perspective on the issue was brought up by Isaac Mutasa. Isaac on his part saw that coalition formation was not the best way to tackle the political drama in Zimbabwe and also explained why the coalition formation will fail. He said leadership struggle amongst other issues will impede the struggle for a grand coalition and the destabilization that will be brought in by other smaller parties who may wish to get bigger shares of the coalition. Isaac also identified that the main party headed by Mugabe is taking advantages of the poverty and hunger crises to provide food to the locals during political campaigns to buy voters.

You can read more about the crisis by Isaac here

The puzzling question at the end of the seminar was...what will come after Mugabe?

Panel Discussion

The panel discussion about the political crisis in Zimbabwe was held during the seminar. The panel was composed of Mr. David Coltart, Birgitta Ohlsson and Isaac Mutasa.

During the panel discussion, Mr. Coltar centered on the reformation of the leading party rather than its destruction as well as the need for a coalition amongst the political parties. This he said would give more strength to the opposition parties in order to defeat the county’s only biggest party headed by Robert Mugabe.

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