Quotes of the day, from Zimbabwe

by fpman

Grace Mugabe (Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe’s wife, 41 years the leader’s junior, formerly his typist, currently head of the ruling ZANU-PF party’s Women’s League, and a target of sanctions by the US and the EU) could easily blame some of the reputation she has on her name. It is just too tempting for critics to call her “Disgrace.” Names like “First Shopper,” however, are not necessarily a result of her otherwise nice first name.

Most recently a series of evictions have been giving her a bad name. She owns farmland in the vicinity of where the latter have been taking place and is thus suspected by some of having something to do with this. A government official’s explanation that the evictions are to make room for a national monument site, for a 19th century anti-colonial hero, sounds not much better from the point of view of those evicted. For now, Zimbabwe’s High Court has ordered a halt to the evictions and so the issue is not “settled” yet.

Our first quote comes from one of the farmers facing eviction:

“The police compared us to ants saying, ‘There’s no way an ant can fight an elephant because Amai (Mrs) Mugabe is a high profile person and you’re ordinary citizens,'”

The police are wrong, of course, and this brings us our second quote of the day. Ants can actually protect trees from elephants who tend to keep away from them. Apparently:

“Whereas giraffes can swipe ants away with their tongues, elephants are more vulnerable because their nostrils are located far from their mouths.”