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The first twenty years of independence in Zimbabwe saw the political landscape being dominated by political parties that had emerged from the bitter struggles and the liberation of the country from domination that come with colonialism in 1890.
What emerged was the desire by those political parties in charge of state apparatus to dominate not only instruments of the state but other political forces.
The first decade of independence was characterised by the use of violence as political parties jostled for political dominance.
This struggle culminated in victory for the dominant ruling party ZANU which through coercive tactics and political dexterity swallowed the main opposition party ZAPU thus virtually silencing other opposition elements.
The second decade of independence saw ZANU PF’s domination challenged by political parties riding on the wave of a nascent democratization movement and a mission to end the populaces’ economic disenchantment that emanated from the governments decision to adopt the neo-liberal philosophy and structural adjustment.
Douglas Munemo is Lecturer in the Department of Development Studies, Midlands state University, Zimbabwe.
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