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The Path to Power: A review of Arthur Mutambara's book

by Arthur Mutambara
24 November 2018 | 2131 Views
This is the second book in a series of three volumes  that traces the leadership thoughts and philosophical disposition of Professor Arthur G.O. Mutambara over a period of 35 years. The dramatic removal of Robert Mugabe by a people-backed coup d'état in November 2017 was greeted with euphoria and high expectations. However, the ensuing goodwill was rapidly squandered – the dream was deferred. Zimbabwe's elections in July 2018 generated tremendous hope – the exhilaration for change was palpable.

Alas, it was not to be. It was a false moment. The vision of a peaceful, democratic and wealthy nation characterised by inclusive economic growth and shared prosperity – the ‘Zimbabwean Dream' – has proven difficult to attain. In fact, this ambition has been hard to achieve in most African countries. Hence, Mutambara's work is in search of the elusive ‘African Dream'. The trilogy constitutes a fascinating intellectual and political journey by the man who would become Deputy Prime Minister of Zimbabwe at the age of 42. It is a collection of grounded reflections presented together with selected autobiographical material. The work is a product of rigorous and peer-reviewed research and analysis. It contributes to the epistemology of thought leadership from the perspective of an engineer-cum-politician, bridging the knowledge gap between the two disciplines.

This volume – The Path to Power – deals with Mutambara's return to Africa from the United States and re-entry into Zimbabwean politics, leading to his swearing-in as Deputy Prime Minister. The book discusses the build-up to the disputed 2008 elections and the chaotic aftermath. An erudite and blistering speech Mutambara gave led to his arrest and detention. Neither SADC nor the AU recognised the sham and genocidal June 2008 run-off election. This led to the SADC mediation efforts, facilitated by SA's Thabo Mbeki. The intervention produced the GPA – the basis for the GNU. This well-researched book is the first literary contribution by someone intimately involved with both the GPA and GNU. The work provides a nuanced perspective of an insider and will assist scholars in this domain. In 2018, with the rigging of elections in Zimbabwe now at an industrial scale, the book articulates the lessons to be drawn from such polls. It proffers a strategic way forward – the path to power. The book is organised into three sections: Return to Africa and Re-entry into Politics (2003–2005); Building a Viable Alternative to ZANU-PF (2006–2007); and Journey Towards the GNU (2008–2009).




Professor Arthur G.O. Mutambara is the former Deputy Prime Minister of Zimbabwe. Former President Robert Mugabe, the late former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Mutambara were the three GPA Principals who created and led the GNU. He is currently a Visiting Full Professor with the University of Johannesburg and an independent technology and strategy consultant. Previously, he was the President of the African News Agency, a technology-driven multimedia news platform. Mutambara has written two electrical engineering books. He is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institute of Engineering and Technology, Zimbabwe Institute of Engineers and the Zimbabwe Academy of Sciences.



Mutambara Mugabe Tsvangirai


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