Thursday, 26 November 2015

Zim is a mess because of our laissez-faire mentality - we foolishly gave Mugabe a blank cheque!

“Young educated Zimbabweans, some who have come back to the country, are disconnected from politics because it is failing to address their aspirations. They are hardly excited about anything politicians might have to say. They are tired of lies and false promises as they see and experience the rot,” wrote brother Vince Musewe, in his latest commentary on Zimbabwe’s worsening human tragedy.

Brother Vince you clearly move around in the same circles as I do because what you said in your article is what I have heard for decades. I have learnt to read between the line and thus know the students too are lying.

Young Zimbabweans say they “are tired of lies and false promises” but that is nonsense. What do they know about the false promises?

Many of our young people have never shown any interest in politics or current affairs. Talk of football, movies, Holy Wood gossip, sex, etc. and their ears prick up and swivel round like a deer’s; they can listen to five conversations and will not miss a thing. Talk of things affecting their own lives like indigenisation law and they switch off; their brains which had lit like NYC a moment ago will suddenly be Harare with ZESA load shedding in full swing.

I spoke to a Bindura University of Science and Technology (BUST) graduate recently. I have visited the campus before and was disappointed at sorry state of the place; everything in varying stages of rot and decay. I was not surprised to hear things are even worse now. No doubt the quality of education provided has suffered; but that is another story.

The backdrop of my discussion with the BUST graduate was a report saying as few as 2% of the tens of thousands graduates Mugabe has caped in the last few months will have a formal job in the next year - a daunting prospect for all the graduates and their families and friends. After all the years of hard work on the part of the graduate and the sacrifice by the family in resources and time; it is disheartening to then end up on the street selling air time cards and trinkets!

I asked, my niece, the graduate whether she had heard of government’s indigenisation laws. She had heard the bit forcing new foreign businesses to sell 51% of their shares to a local partner as a condition for them being allowed to set shop in Zimbabwe. The locals who buy the shares would be economically empowered.  

I asked if ordinary graduates like her would ever buy these shares. She had not thought about that one but in the end admitted that was highly unlikely. The ruling elite and those with political connections are the only one who would be empowered by indigenisation law, she concluded.

The economic empowerment graduates like her would get is in the form of employment opportunities by new businesses setting up and that was the one thing the indigenisation law had stopped happening. Would be new investors were shying away from Zimbabwe because selling the controlling share of their business to a local partner they did not ask for present an unacceptable additional business risk!

Zanu PF promised the nation 2.2 million new jobs in five years the party’s 2013 election manifesto and, two and half years later, it clear the regime will not keep its promise. But if a few minutes of judicious enquiry established that the indigenisation law would empower the ruling elite and impoverish the ordinary people; a similar exercise would have left the student and the nation at large in no doubt Zanu PF would never create 2.2 million new jobs.

So it is rich for the young people to say they are “are tired of lies and false promises” of 2.2 million new jobs, for example, when they could have easily established that this was a false promised. Only a fool would believe in a false promise knowing or had every opportunity to establish that it is a false promise!  

“The older generation of Zimbabweans are watching in resignation as they wait and hope that the young will gather the courage to challenge the status quo as they did during their time,” wrote Vince.

By “the older generation”, I take it you mean those who fought to end white colonial oppression. How many times has the nation been reminded of the heroism and self-sacrifice of those involved in liberation struggle? Mugabe alone has reminded us of his heroism a thousand times and a thousand times again, this year alone! But if the truth be told, and it must now be said, we are in this mess because our yesteryear liberators are today our new corrupt and murderous oppressors.

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power,” said President Abraham Lincoln.

If the liberation war generation had been diligent, courageous and farsighted then they should have realized ending white colonial rule was only half the job and making sure the freedom, liberty, justice, etc. so many had risked life and limp for were delivered was the other half. We are in this hell-hole because the liberation war generation failed to realize that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely!

“Those in the diaspora are also waiting and hoping that something gives because they can't do much but write in protest from where they are. As a result nothing much is happening as we see the likes of Grace Mugabe become the centre of attention for the wrong reasons,” continued Vince.

Zimvigil people have been protesting outside the Zimbabwe Embassy for 13 years now; that is protesting. A few people like to let off steam by cursing at Mugabe, his wife and his cronies in the papers but that is not really protesting. Besides how can these people protest when they do not have a clue what is going on in Zimbabwe?

How many people in the diaspora protested at Tsvangirai and his MDC friends’ failure to implement even one of the democratic reforms in five years of the GNU, for example? SADC Heads complained about it and so too did the foreign media like BBC and CNN. There was not a squeak was from Zimbabweans both in the country and outside. Why? Because very few Zimbabweans were even aware of the critical importance of implementing the reforms as the prerequisite for free, fair and credible elections.

Indeed even to this day, two and half years since the rigged July 2013 elections, many people know Mugabe blatantly rigged the elections but have no idea this would have never happened if MDC leaders implemented the reforms. If anything, many of those in the diaspora have been defending MDC’s betrayal, offering some of the feeblest excuses which only showed just how ignorant they are.

When the nation attained her independence in 1980 many Zimbabweans believed they would enjoy freedom, liberty, economic prosperity, etc. without doing as much as lift a finger! The same laissez-faire mentality has been passed from father to son to grandson. It is therefore no surprise that my niece and her fellow graduates should now believe that now they have their university degree or whatever they will get a job, etc. without having to do anything else.
It was all nonsense of course; attaining independence did not mean giving Mugabe a blank cheque just as having a degree does not necessarily equate to a good job.

We should have never abandoned our civic duty of understanding the nation’s post-independence challenges and held the leaders to account. A good education should help my niece understand government policies and thus not so easily brainwashed. What is the point of spending all the years and money educating someone if they cannot make use of what they learnt to improve their own lives!

I do agree with you Vince 100% that we are the masters of our own destiny; if we want to end this nightmare this Zanu PF dictatorship then we will have to do ourselves. We are the masters of our own destiny.

“I am the master of my fate,
      I am the captain of my soul.”
As the poet William Ernest Henley so aptly put.

Being captain of our own destiny is one thing but knowing where we are going is another! So far we have allowed Mugabe to frog match us deeper and deeper into this hell-on-earth. We will have to get off our backsides and understand where we are, where we want to be and chart a roadmap out of here. The long we sit and do nothing the deeper we will descent into this hell and the harder and longer it will take us to dig ourselves out, if we ever get out!


Zimbabwe Light said...

@ Patrick

If the truth be told, people elected Tsvangirai in 2008 as an act of desperation; they wanted Mugabe out and so elected anyone just to get Mugabe out. If the people had been as smart as they should be then they would have realized it was a foolish move because Mugabe was able to bribe Tsvangirai and thus stay in power.

It would be very foolish for this nation to elect someone as corrupt and incompetent as Tsvangirai ever again; it would be unforgivable folly to elect Tsvangirai again. How someone like Vince even considered someone like Tsvangirai or Mujuru a potential leader beggars belief!

Zimbabwe Light said...

Ever since the rigged July 2013 elections most Zimbabweans switched off and gone into the usual sulk. They are hiding under the usual excuse of "we cannot change anything anywhere so why bother!" The worsen economic situation will force them to abandon their false comfort zone and vote blindly in a desperate huff!

If Zimbabweans do not wake up by early next year then all is lot; we are set for a repeat of the 2008 elections!

Zimbabwe Light said...

IN actions and words on his first tour of the world's poorest continent, Pope Francis has sent a message to African leaders that they could do with less pomp and a bit more humility.

In Zimbabwe we could trade the pomp and humility for a less corruption; the country is losing billions of dollars every month through the serious looting and plunder of diamonds going on in Marange and Chiadzwa. It really does not make any sense that the looting is going on 24/7 and yet the fiscus is not getting even a single dollar from this bounty!

In 2012 Mugabe alone pocketed as much as $ 2 billion from his share of the plunder; that constitutes 50% of the regime’s budgeted national annual expenditure. No wonder Mugabe’s wife has already started her shameless vote-buying campaign for the 2018 elections and if that fails there is no doubt the regime will once again unleash wanton violence as it did in 2008.

So instead of the diamonds and other resources being used for the good of the nation they are now a curse to the nation. Mugabe will shed the lives of many innocent Zimbabweans before he is finally forced to give up his dictatorial powers; the price of allowing the dictatorship to continue is that millions will suffering in abject poverty and despair; that is the grime political reality!

Zimbabwe Light said...

HARARE - The closure of clinics run by the Premier Services Medical Investment (PSMI) — on the back of the failure by government to remit millions of dollars to the Premier Service Medical Aid Society (Psmas), is a serious injustice to civil servants who form the bulk of the society’s membership.