Humpty Dumpty’s great fall
Strange as it might seem, it took African Americans in the US, not native Zimbabweans, to deflate Mawarire’s balloon and bring him crashing down to Earth.
Pretending that his life in Zimbabwe was terminally endangered, Mawarire went to the US intending to organise the mother of all demonstrations which would put Zimbabwe under the UN spotlight, if supine Sadc couldn’t do it in Mbabane.
He wanted to achieve singlehanded what the MDCs in their variegated shades and permutations have failed to achieve since 2000 — bringing Zimbabwe under UN sanctions and possibly manufacturing an alibi for a US-led military invasion of the country.
The venue and occasion of course was the UN General Assembly in New York this week, in the full glare of America’s globalised media arsenal. There was a lot of anticipation and gloating back home - Mawarire’s star was at its zenith.
Enter the December 12 Movement As he was being serenaded by his white hosts, one doubts that Mawarire ever imagined that a majority of blacks were disgusted by his antics, that whites themselves regard people like him with haughty contempt, for such can be used and dumped afterwards.
When the moment arrived for his star to shine, Mawarire found he only had a straw of 19 equally contemptible black souls.
In brutal Zimbabwe he would have easily blamed the police for blocking his followers; in free America democracy was at his full service.
Massed against them was a multitude of African Americans. Their bold placards said it loudly: “Mugabe is right. Zimbabwe will never be a colony again.”
The “holy” pastor draped in a Zimbabwean flag was pleading for his country to be recolonised by white America but was being openly rebuked, and told that would never happen.
Mawarire couldn’t find a manhole to dive into, that is if he has any sense of shame. (But then he must persevere. He has eaten the white man’s money and he must know that there is no free lunch in the white world, especially for a misguided black man trying to sell his own birthright).
And persevering he is to justify the filthy lucre he is getting. Mawarire boasted that he met Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, the man exploring various investment opportunities in Zimbabwe.
For a man who laments about the state of his country’s economy, normal people would expect him to try and persuade the Nigerian businessman to put a fraction of his fortune into our economy.
Not the “holy” pastor. He claims he told Dangote to keep away from Zimbabwe because there, government ministers have an uncanny talent for looting investors’ money.
Dangote must have been surprised, but then in a democracy everyone is allowed to expose themselves, which is how Mawarire got himself noticed by the Americans.
Ever so diligent, Mawarire visited the World Bank on a similar mission, as if that institution needs persuading.
But there is logic to the pastor'’s madness. He has a family to feed. If he can eat on the people’s behalf the better. Mawarire is being sponsored to denigrate his country and has no qualms receiving money for it.
What he resents is anybody or institution with money giving it to the pastor.
Mawarire is, however, walking a familiar path. It has become the business of opposition leaders to campaign against foreign investment in Zimbabwe while they are ready to receive foreign cash into their pockets.
They will fight land reform and other black economic empowerment policies so long as they can get money to fund their political projects.
But Mawarire’s failed demonstration in New York has an important lesson. Zimbabweans are a gullible people ready to be taken for a ride by even the shallowest pretenders.
To think that for more than a week the nation saw a phenomenon in Evan Mawarire and the media swallowed his humbug hook, line and sinker without anybody taking a step back to say we have been here before: Baba Jukwa!
And this is worth repeating for the benefit of the opposition. Elections are not won on social media. So long as they continue to believe Zanu-PF is rigging elections by mobilising its supporters to register in readiness to vote in the Zimbabwe. That reduces the size of the cake for next elections, they are doomed. Mawarire went to America riding on a crest of media hero, believing he would get a hero’s welcome. He fell like Humpty Dumpty in the middle of New York.