Monday, June 24, 2002
The Beginning of the End for Zimbabwe

The government of Robert Mugabe has monopolised all the distribution of grain and maize under the state owned Grain Marketing Board. This body has proved unequal to the task of distributing maize or grain around the country and the FAO now estimates that six million people, half the population, face starvation. The death rate will soar as those who already suffer from immune deficiencies caused by AIDS and complicated by malnutrition will inevitably succumb.

Three thousand farmers have to stop work under the Land Acquisition Act (Section 8) although many are courageously continuing in order to feed their fellow citizens. As grain is running out, it is estimated that in a few more weeks, bread will run out in the cities. Mugabe is forgetting that even dictators have to keep their populations fed. During the lean periods, people are too busy trying to survive, to think and agitate for change. So famine will probably extend Mugabe's grip on power in the short-term but once the economy has turned the corner, many Zimbabweans may argue that peaceful change is no longer a morally acceptable course of action when dealing with such a monstrous regime and they would be right.


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