Zimbabwe is a place near to my heart. My best friends at University were from Harare. We went to Zim on honeymoon. I will take my kids there to visit the falls, the lake and the highlands. One day it will recover, its people will no longer be hungry and the economy will thrive. The people of Zimbabwe will make this happen, sooner or later.
Today is election day. Jeff mentions the election history of Zim. It is not pleasant reading.
This time aoround the blogosphere is highlighting the corruption, fraud and intimidation in ways that the government can’t control. I wrote some weeks ago about blogging and social media in Kenya, and it fabulous to see Zim bloggers doing what most of the press stopped doing ages ago.
Have a look at Kubatana for instance, live blogging election exit polls.
Have a look at Sokwanele’s google mashup.
Or this video on youtube.
I have been following Sokwanele for some time, but reading that blog today, I’m filled with a sense that Zim is on the edge of change. I hope Mugabe goes quietly, and that there is little violence, but I believe the people of Zimbabwe are Sokwanele, which means Enough is Enough.
“The unconfirmed reports (or rumours) are flying crazily. Just heard that Robert Mugabe has apparently left for Mozambique (this morning it was Mauritius).
We also heard that Chiweshe (ZEC Chairman) fled the Meikles Hotel in Harare where the press are gathered waiting to hear results. The story goes that he refused to deliver the news.
Another unconfirmed report is that Elliot Manyike has shot someone in anger, seriously angry because he lost his seat.
But the oddest news of the morning so far is the story that Sabina Mugabe has died of a heart attack and Bob is using this as an excuse to delay the news.
I laughed at this last, because it sounds like such Zimbo grapevine stuff, but the story is coming in from a variety of sources.
It’s hard to filter fact from fiction at this stage. But what it tells me is that the nation is desperate for news and starting to share everything they have as fast as they can.
Oh, and last bit of confirmed news – this is fact fact – via the ZBC is that they are still “verifying” the results. We all know what “verifying” has meant in previous years.
… as I finished writing and was just about to post, one more snippet of news came in: the police have apparently been put on high alert commencing 2pm and the MDC planning to do a press announcement this afternoon – no time given yet.
Suddenly it turns ominous. But I’m still buzzing, BUZZING!
OH….. and another flash of info just in (this is what it’s like today) news that people are starting to celebrate everywhere.
Blogging and the web is playing a small but important role in undermining Bob. To the guys and gals behind the Sokwanele blog, respect. You are the A-list bloggers.
Sokwanele has just posted this
Let’s hope the people of Zimbabwe, who have seen the results outside the polling station doors with their own eyes, will not let this happen! Let’s also hope the army and security forces will refuse to participate in the oppression of their own people.
I hope so to.
I will leave you with Bob Marley’s Zimbabwe.
Perhaps his record company could re-release this one.
Natty Dread it in-a (Zimbabwe); Set it up in (Zimbabwe);
Mash it up-a in-a Zimbabwe (Zimbabwe);
Africans a-liberate (Zimbabwe), yeah