Barely surprising; strangely surreal

It is strange to be a Zimbabwean.

I haven’t been updating since five because I picked her up from work, then went over to her place to watch the election results on TV.

As I lay on the couch, flipping from BBC to Sky, I glanced over at her tap-tapping out the work she’d brought home. The typing stopped; she was watching the screen incredulously.

Me – “Isn’t it weird?”

“Mm-hmmm”, she nodded.

“We watch this same stuff on these same channels, be it East Timor, Chad, Kenya, whatever. And now, today it’s happening here … this is us. This is Zimbabwe.”

She gave me a plaintive, exhausted gaze. “Yah, sha.”

“Yah” is just about right.

Update: People say they’ve decided to give Uncle 52% and get a runoff with Morgan. I’ll stay up as long as I can and try stay updated.

118 Replies to “Barely surprising; strangely surreal”

  1. Do you think though that the zim people have the stomach for violence? Coz previous calls for street action havent exactly been heeded. It might be our saving grace, but our ultimate downfall. Coz if the great uncle can pull this one off, people deserve what they get for the next 5 years. Regardless.

  2. You know, I have no idea. On the one hand, I think people would try and be calm etc.

    On the other hand, in Harare at least, I can see people feeling just … enough. Although, I doubt many peeps North-West of the railway line will be singing “M’china wam”.

  3. The deathly silence from the Sheraton is what’s getting me antsy. You can feel the tensions rising really.

    At least Radio 1 is playing some good stuff.

  4. So, in our rumour and conjecture section, word around is that those 600,000 postal ballots are what’s causing the delay.

    There is frantic shuffling around to save the bigwigs who lost, like Joyce and Stan. There’s also major work going on in the Senate area and, of course, the Pres election.

    So sit tight, Zimbos. We haven’t even begun. Calculators are working furiously.

  5. News 24 seems to be saying that MDC-T is now up to 56 with Zanu still on 53. Incredible, in the true sense of the word, defying belief and credulity (is that even a word?)

    You cant even know the depths of my depression.

  6. It means that the government is angling for a run-off so that they can gerrymander properly the next time. Turns out that the great uncle has enough faith in his win that he is now calling for the ICC World cup to be held in zim in 2015. How is that for madness. I cant even go into why that is insulting on so many levels. What few marbles he had left must surely be rattling around on a n’anga’s floor somewhere.

  7. Neck and neck, in Parliament, means deadlock. Besides, they won’t allow that to happen no matter what. They’ll want to win it outright.

    Besides, even if MDC won Parly, if they were rigged out of the Presidency they’d be toothless. There is too much power vested in the Presidency that he can just rule by decree.

    Neck and neck in the Pres poll means a run-off for the top two candidates in 21 days. That will at least give Uncle time to get his house in order. No mistakes.

  8. According to the MDC website
    http://www.mdczimbabwe.org/

    “YOUR VOTE WILL NOT BE CHEATED BY MUGABE AND ZANU PF, PLEASE BE VIGILANT AND WAIT FOR PLAN B AND C.”

    Yeah right!. These are the same cats that promised the “Final Push”, “Winter of discontentment” but to mention a few

    Dont hold your breath folks

  9. We’re going again … it’s a penalty shootout as usual, they’re naming one ZPF, one MDCT, as before. I count six each so far, and still going.

  10. They’ve released 18 seats now, I think it was 9 zpf 8 mdct and 1 mdc.

    Not sure, will wait for those who are actually bloody listening closely 🙂

  11. *Sighs dramatically*

    It’s all gone to pot I tell you. Could do with some of that pot right now though.

  12. LOL!!!

    The ZEC have announced that they are RECEIVING results from the Presidential poll, and counting and verification will commence soon under the watch of relevant officials and the elections officers from the candidates.

    So, I guess by the time those numbers arrive at the Sheraton they’ll be intact?

    Haha, almost makes me wanna say Fuck It. But I won’t, I’ll keep y’all informed the best I can.

  13. Freaking heck, can they just tell us already sha! This suspense is literally killing me….the whole city is in Limbo, like everything is going at a really slow rate.

    Too much speculation, not enough fact!

    Thanks for keeping me posted btw, much obliged 🙂

  14. Could it be possible that the MDc and Zanu Pf are actually in cohots so as to mk a grand exit for uncle..he went down fightng and all that bull…….why is the MDC not protesting so much abt ths neck and neck thing…a thgt,just a thgt, maybe even a dream

  15. Uhm, the MDC is not protesting about the penalty shootout YET because they’re keeping calm whilst ZEC releases, because any noise and the military is on standby. Remember the thinly-veiled threat that certain MDC actions could be seen as a ‘coup’?

    It’s delicate. That also explains why the results are coming so slowly, becase they can only sit still and listen for as long as it takes to announce everything.

    I reckon the gov’t would the smallest excuse to declare martial law (and hence invalidate the election and its results, which MDC won) and the opposition know this. So they’re behaving while trying to keep a watchful eye out.

  16. I dont think people have never watched as much news in the last three days as they have in their life

  17. They’ve have never watched as much and learned so little. Ordinarily you should be able to take a doctorate in the news after that much exposure. Never have the hopes of so many been manhandled by the self-interests of so few.

  18. My statistician skills are sorely lacking, but what I understand is this: ZESN has sampled 435 of the 9000 polling stations to release their figures of 49% for T, 42%. Is 5% about right for reliable figures for such a poll? This is a genuine question, not me trying to be facetious. What sort of margin of error are they factoring in? (read margin of rigging)

  19. Dunno, haven’t seen ZESN’s figures yet. Besides, A-Level Statistics was … 11 years ago 🙂

    No news here, all quiet. Just rumour and speculation.

  20. I see that Emmerson won a seat in some place called Chirumanzu-zibagwe. Now a million dollars says that no one knows where that is on a map.

  21. With the distinct difference that an erection can be resuscitated by a quick dose of viagra. Who will be our Viagra to rescue us from our deflation? Premature has never been more apt.

  22. Bugger this. I’m not staying up all night again folks, I’m going to bed now 🙂

    We’ll see what’s up at 0600. Prolly not much, eh? Oh.

  23. Now we are up to 160 constituencies: 78 Zanu 77 MDC-t, and the same 5 for Mutambara. As jokes go, this is one April Fool’s one that has gone on too long.

  24. Good mng guys..and i hope it will be a GREAT day. Eleanor these people are talking, MDC and ZANU are taking us all for fools…eh, the MDC has already started trying to trick us!!!!! I am sure of this and MT is bhvng like uncle already???!!!.I will not glue myself to the bbc today, I am not amused.

  25. Apparently Mbeki’s managed to broker a deal, and it could be announced at any time.

    How is trying to negotiate a peaceful exit for Uncle ‘taking us all for fools’, cylla?

  26. Cylla, all politicians are the same. Look at Zambia after Kaunda, Chiluba travelled the exact same path, albeit for a shorter time thanks to Mwanawasa. Zim will probably follow in the same steps. It will only be the 3rd generation of politicians that will start putting things right. Who would have thought that us Zimbos would be seeking refuge north of the border. I remember going to Zambia in 98 and a coke cost 500 kwacha (zambian) and thinking OHMIGOD how do people survive. Well, now I know.

  27. Joe why don’t they just say ” yes” we are talking…why the vehement denials, I mean really, i understand that we are only looking for a change not a greater leadership why the denials?

  28. It’s about perceptions and managing them. You dont want to do anything now that would make the great uncle look like he is losing face. You know what they say about a wounded animal being the most dangerous. It’s now down to the greater good, give him a deal for him to retire comfortably somewhere with his ill-gotten gains so that the rest of us can move on. Few will begrudge him that if it means that we can try to get the country back on its feet. I for one certainly will not, because all that time, money and valuable resources spent in prosecuting him could be better used for some development or feeding project somewhere. hell, a borehole and running water even.

    http://www.zimelectionresults.com reports that its now 99-95, and with 3 by elections (untimely deaths) the end is nigh for the assembly results. Now we come to the meaty part. How much longer can they put it off for? Because I am sure if they were cooking the results, surely they are cooked to the point of burning by now.

  29. Incidentally Johno Moyo seems to have retained his Tsholotsho seat. Seems the force was with him.

  30. Oh, there’s 3 by-elections apparently. So I don’t know, will just wait for the news / announcements.

    Dunno why there will be 3 re-runs though, I know one guy died already.

  31. Should the ZEC fail to supply us with the official election results tonight, we will have no choice but to source them from the black market.

  32. My computer is kaput. Might be offline for the next few days. Death would be kinder I tell you.

    Will you be getting these results at pump price in the interim?

  33. Elle if you want SMS updates, mail me your number using the contact form, and I’ll see if I can keep you aware.

    Same goes with anyone else I suppose.

  34. Joe I actually thgt tht ws a joke….but anyways should i say rest in peace?????
    Mr Matonga is very pissed off at the MDC rite now…..Now I can I laugh at the way he is going on on BBC???Joe????

  35. I hear Bright Matonga (Deputy Minister of Info & Pub) lost his rag on the BBC just now, lol. Shouting and all, screaming to high hell about the MDC.

    It’s getting interesting.

  36. SHEIZER!!!!

    The government has just announced a massive tax hike for anyone earning between 10 and 15 billion.

    FIFTY-TWO-FUCKING-PERCENT tax.

    My question is, they’re announcing this stuff … which government is this? Cos there isn’t one, lol.

  37. By the way, that’s between 200 and 300 usd at today’s cash rate. A month. You get taxed 52%.

    Couldn’t they have announced this last week? Cos then there’s be NO FUCKING QUESTION who won the erections.

  38. Thnks for the updates joe, u are a star.Sorry bout the tax hey, dn’t take it to heart someone hs to pay for the doctors new cars..etc etc…

  39. Hwange East, taken by MDC-Tsvangirai. The Last two taken by MDC-Mut were won by Tsvangirai, but the ZEC has given them to MDC-Mut. Hmmmmmmm … fraud.

    Gift Mabhena has taken Hwange West. 9 announced, no ZPF.

  40. Oh for fuck’s sakes, “We will come back to you with more results”.

    11 results reported, 1 – ZPF, 5 MDC-T, 4 MDC, 1 Ind.

    So there are 7 left to announce. It would be 11 more, but there are 3 by-elections and one sitting uncontested.

  41. ZBC News says 96 MDC-T, 92 ZPF. Hmmm. Anyways.

    Yeah, the 4 not being counted are because, to repeat, one ZPF guy was uncontested. The other 3 were MDC candidates who died just before the elections, so by-elections are due. Double-hmmm.

  42. I’m watching Barack Obama talking with (right-wing shill) Chris Matthews on MSNBC, and I love it.

    This guy is fucking amazing. I mean it. I love me some Barack. He knows what he’s talking about.

    More fire.

  43. Normal service has been resumed. Baby girl is back.

    Now, for the real deal, how much longer do you think that they can drag it out for with the presidential results?

  44. Nhai JB, since when has Zanu ever been worried or troubled by the law?

    I have reached the point now of ‘whatever’. Gone the excitement of results release. I have sunk back into a state of inertia. I guess that is why there are so many of those Osama videos that do the rounds, just to jolt people back into a sense of heightened tension. Seems that the human mind cannot continually exist in such a state of high drama.

  45. Nice one. Now, one wonders, is this when the alleged backers are finally going to sprout a backbone and come out of whichever closet they are in. Or is their lot forever cast with that of the great uncle? coz if ever there was writing on the wall, this is the time to get out your reading glasses and pay you some serious attention.

  46. So the Herald has described the parliamentary’s as a ‘photo finish’. Can someone explain to me how so?

  47. Ahem, I am yet to make a comment about the Simba Makoni Project.

    In fact, I think I’ll write me a (in no way triumphal) post about it.

  48. “Please bear with us as this is our first experience of vote counting. We decided to actually count the votes this year.”

    ~ Judge George Chiweshe (Chairman ZEC)

  49. That is your definition of a late April Fool’s joke, right? What happened to verification, when did that revert to counting? They have been conducting elections for 28 years, what were they doing all along, pulling figures out of a hat? If people are going to lie, why will they not start with the intelligent lies, why must the lie be dedicated to the lowest common denominator?

    If you need any cheerleaders in your gloating efforts, I am just a holler away.

  50. Is it just me or are the blatherings of Bright Matonga reminiscent of Chemical Ali in the days before the toppling of the Saddam regime?

  51. Yep, their houses will be torched tonite You would not want to see whts going on in the streets of Delhi rite now

  52. I hear Liverpool dodged a bullet from the Arsenal revolver yesterday. I guess well done is in order. So WELL DONE. ManU still on top though.

  53. I see that ya’ll will be carrying around 50 million dollar notes! Man, and all it gets you is 2 loaves of bread! How much are rentals going for, for example a 2 bedroom apartment in the Avenues?

  54. Hmmm, I know someone in Avenues paying 5 billion. But that’s not representative, landlords are just randomising really.

    Senators. Ah, Zimbabwe ndeyeropa for sheezy.

  55. ndeye ropa machewe

    I suggest the runoff should be a 100m dash and the winner takes the presidency……

  56. My quote of the day: chick was so fine I could suck her daddy’s d**k.

    Anyone know that power changed hands in Botswana recently? Peaceful transitions still happen on the continent!

  57. Ehm, Botswana doesn’t actually have an open electoral process. It’s a succession thing, the party chooses a guy (usually obvious, and part of a tight clique) and it’s over.

    So you can’t compare.

  58. Zimbabwe’s main opposition party filed an urgent high court application on Friday to force the electoral commission to release results from last weekend’s presidential election, its lawyer said.

    “It’s an urgent application filed in the high court,” the Movement for Democratic Change’s lawyer Andrew Makoni told reporters.

    “They are saying let’s know the results, from an official source.”

    There has been no word on the outcome of the presidential election, nearly six days after the polls closed.

  59. My point wasnt to compare the two systems, it was the complete lack of drama attached to the process that I was highlighting.

  60. how much noise & how many options can there with a population of 1m people. is there even an opposition in Bots? JB

  61. There is no credible opposition in Bots. It’s been a system of chosen succession since Independence.

    Anyway, apparently the Politburo has decided to contest a second round of the Presidential election.

    Also, credible hearsay has it that the Army may go out onto the streets tonight, so if you’re scared, go home.

  62. Back to the original drama. I see that Zanu has nudged ahead in the senate count: z=20, mdc-t=19, mdc=4. And apparently zanu is calling for a recount for parliament. Hakusi kupenga ikoko here? were they not the ones responsible for the whole thing?

  63. Famous last words: ‘Oh, the Electoral Law actually says you have to announce the results SIX DAYS after the poll. Lol. So it has to be tomorrow anyway. ‘ Rule of law do I hear anyone say?

  64. So Zanu is calling for a recount. I guess that means that the previously held opposition majority is going to slip away. Quiet diplomacy, my substantial baby-got-back ass!

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