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Zanu PF betraying those who fell in war

I HAVE been wondering what happens if a breakdown vehicle summoned to tow away a broken down car also breaks down.

I suppose it becomes neccessary to find another

breakdown vehicle to tow away both vehicles unable to reach their destinations on their own. This speaks precisely about the situation prevailing in Zimbabwe today.

The party people supported through the struggle, Zanu PF, is without the energy to take us further to fully enjoy the benefits many expected to derive from a country in charge of its own affairs.

Increasingly, the party that many expected to be at the centre of political reform is bearing features identical to the system we went to war against.

To date, many Zimbabweans still deny that Zanu PF can no longer take us anywhere. I can understand how those who stand by it, including our elderly parents, still live in denial that a party they trusted so much could be entirely devoted to autocratic and self-serving rule.

Many of us lost relatives and friends to the liberation struggle. I never saw my grandfather, herdman Aaron Shumba, who was murdered during the war by Selous Scouts.

Others lost sons and daughters. Others lost parents who they wish were here today to watch them mature into adult citizens.

Others are still alive but maimed, having devoted their lives to fighting for their country.

It was reasonable for President Mugabe to award the war veterans some $50 000 each in recognition of their sacrifice. But I think there was no better way of thanking them than by creating a Zimbabwe in which the causes that took them to war were accomplished.

The hunger many live with, created by our own government, chaotic reforms and partisan interference in commercial farming operations, can never please souls that fought for us and perished. It is painful to see the remains of those dumped in mass graves and realise that we have a government that insists that the system we have today is the best we can have in honour of the fallen fighters.

It is an insult to the worth of all who fought selflessly to break the spine of a system that lavished a few with the sweat and toil of the black majority as does the one we have today.

To honour these dedicated and selfless heroes, we have to mantain our conduct in line with the aspirations of the people from as far back as 1893 to 1979 who battled and demanded the colonialists to realise that without justice peace was a myth.

Many of us who lived through the war thought we would be free and that we would create a nation in which the evils of the past system would never again re-emerge.

Colonial socio-economic injustice was, as it is today, supported by disenfranchisement of voters. It was upheld, as it remains today, by pseudo-elections predetermined to mantain a leadership that would lose a free and fair election given its background of unrealistic socio-economic policing.

I believe that any programme the government undertook, particulary land reform, was supposed to be done in a way that kept the country on its feet while tactfully introducing sons and daughters of the soil into this important resource on which not only our economy but the subsistence of our population is based.

I will defend to death the need to obliterate from the face of our country any ownership patterns that keep us stuck in the dispossesion caused by colonial greed.

Food, as strategic as it is, its production and distribution, is a matter at the heart of our internal stability. It is therefore neccessary that many of our kith and kin be at the centre of our means of survival.

As a nation we must be truthful to each other about political and social issues if we are to prosper. It is a shame we have not seen any enthusiasm by Zanu PF to open the country to constructive self-criticism.

I believe Zanu PF has outlived its relevance for it continues to draw its comfort from past glories. Today’s and future demands are the concern of us all.

People now have new expectations. Zimbabwe has an opposition that many are ready to give a chance in office. Gone are the days of basking in past glory while the country burns.

People could one day wake up to a new constitution if we had true statesmen determined to correct their wrongs.

We would have no militia centres but colleges imparting skills in road mantainance, roofing, etc and we would have as many Zimbabwean daily newspapers as prospective investors can possibly invest in.

We could wake up to a variety of electronic media and call the public to discuss issues of growth and opportunity, giving the people confidence that they are involved in our policy initiatives.

Zimbabwe still has a lot to deliver – a good transport system, investment in health, reduction in tax to give people a bit more to spend, creation of jobs and the depoliticisation of our army, police and the intelligence service.

We can invest in rural electrification programmes and upgrade our roads. All we need are people willing to work and achieve goals.

I have been in the UK for some time, but no matter what good I see here, there is nothing that beats the pride of seeing my own country being spoken of positively.

Zimbabwe can only enjoy real freedom and development if the chance to govern is given to a different calibre of people with different reasons for seeking public office to those we have now.

Zimbabwe’s economy will continue to deteriorate under the leadership of Zanu PF. The leadership of Zanu PF derives pleasure from inflicting pain on others by malicious application of the intellect.

We cannot move beyond Mugabe and hope to make right his wrongs with individuals like he has as cabinet ministers at the helm of our country.

With Mugabe they too must go! This will allow Zimbabwe to move beyond an era of brainwashing and idolatry.

Courage Shumba,


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