Among the tragedies of twentieth century Africa is a reluctance on the part of leaders to leave office and allow others to assume leadership of the nation. Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi is determined to offer a new approach to power –voluntarily surrender power in order to demonstrate that democracy means power changes and life goes on. Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has refused to surrender power even though he lost the last presidential election and the result is three million have left the nation and unemployment has now reached a level of 90%. Zenawi will not stand for election again. He comes from the Tigray group which only constitutes six percent of the population and his decision is a message to fellow members of the group that they must expand their scope and join in coalitions if their nation is to prosper and become a democracy.
Now, if Zimbabweans could just get their president for life, Robert Mugabe, to head into the setting sun, the nation might be saved from disaster.