Zimbabwe is awash with speculation, innuendo and rumours of a coup following a statement against corrupt leaders by the army General during burial of a national hero Nleya, with even left some of the most well-informed officials in the dark about what comes next.
Zimbabwe is facing hard times due to COVID 19 and economic downturn. The bureaucracy and the public have been on tenterhooks, awaiting the next twist in the gripping political saga. The army has been quoted and misquoted which fuels the rumour machine and puts the nation on an unnecessary tension.
Zimbabwean government has come out strongly refuting the rumours and putting the records straight. Despite all the explanation the nation still gets worried and not understand what comes next. But the country’s citizens have been flooding the internet with information ranging from highly implausible to appear authentic.
The rumours of a coup are worse than the coup itself. It has long-lasting negative effects on the economy. The citizens will lose confidence in their government and peace as we know it will be eroded.
Those who circulate the rumours of a coup knows very well that the rumours of a coup help to put the government down. So it is not surprising that these rumour mongers are sworn enemies of the state.
There is a serious shock on any market on the news of a coup.
The minimal market reaction from Rumours of a military coup is not what might be expected in such a situation. Martial law usually makes investors and businesses very nervous.
As a result of these rumours, the Zimbabwean bond dollar moved much down versus the US dollar and the stock market is suspended. While other aspects of the economy rose to about a five-month high despite the turmoil in Rumour land. But, it is early days.
The paradoxical outcome is due in part to the previous coup in the country. In short, the military is a constant presence in Zimbabwe and this does not mean a coup is imminent.
It must be known that when a rumour of a coup happens, the civil servants and workers in general pack up their offices and go home to await the announcement of the next step. People a prone to avoid the streets where a rumour of a coup is circulating, this is a precaution should the coup results in unrest and worse.
A curfew will lead to the streets emptying.
Worryingly, elections may not happen for another year – though there is pressure from others for the democratic process to be restored quickly.
Unsurprisingly, some foreign investors will pull out and pull their money out of the country, contributing to the prospect of a recession. The economy will contract in anticipation of political turmoil that will follow.
At that time, the ratings will show a negative impact.
While this is only a rumour it will surely cause a political stalemate. It is, nevertheless, a troubling position for a country to be in.
It is not the only impact. The important tourism industry, which accounts for nearly one-third of GDP, will likely be affected. Travel advisories will be issued and visits will be limited.
Usurping the democratic process, no matter how frequently it has been done, won’t inspire confidence over the longer term. Evidence from around the world suggests peace is shaken when there is a rumour of disturbances.
The rumours of a coup again make people lose confidence in their governments and give the country an instability face.
In one rumour that spread rapidly a military coup had been launched and soldiers are all over towns. This rumour makes people see soldiers everywhere even if they are just shadows.
In the middle of all these rumours all appeared calm and by and bye there was no indication that anything was out of the ordinary.
“Politics in Zimbabwe is a rough and tumble business. This is an open and public evidence of this and what happens behind the velvet curtain that the world never sees. Adding to the air of intrigue in the country the self-proclaimed Spokesperson of the confusion professor Jonathan Moyo twits the rumours citing impeccable sources.
The opposition uses the rumours as a sign that things are not well in the country. A make-believe situation is created and the country gets more confused.
The rumours of a coup plants distrust between the army and the people. Between the army and the president. In actual fact, the situation in the country becomes dog’s breakfast
Indeed spreading rumours about a coup is proper sabotage and should be considered as treason.
While the rumours feed in the press the people do suffer.
For the love of our country we should desist from spreading false woods.
Source – Dr Masimba Mavaza