It’s a shame I haven’t finished writing my post on the riots back in 1998. I had intended on completing that story and moving on to how I met Morgan Tsvangirai after an attack at his offices. I will come back to that in future posts. A more pressing issue has come to the fore – the fact that after twenty years, the country where I was born is still in turmoil.
Corruption doesn’t breed itself. Yes, weeds grow wherever we plant good seeds, strangling them and suffocating the crop we intend to nurture. But, as I look at the politics in Zimbabwe, I find it hard to find anything but weeds growing from the same spot where the seeds of hope once existed. Who can distinguish the factions from each other? The life line supporting both sides seems to share a mother, or at least is hinted at being the same soiled weed with two heads pretending to be contenders.
After yesterday’s riots and unnecessary deaths of citizens, I ask: who wins?
Recently, I got into a light debate with a friend on the history of Zimbabwe. He made a flippant remark that maybe everyone was better off during the colonial times or under Ian Smith’s regime. It’s an easy enough comment to make when you’re peering through a historical looking glass and not living in the skin of those who were persecuted under that rule. In the same way an older relative pointed out that Mnangagwa was far better candidate than Mugabe. Depends on where you sit culturally. Some fight for the MDC, pointing to them to be saviours of the day. I say, look at the reports of their behaviour over this election and how they instigated the riots.
Am I the only one who sees a trend in these leaders? The selfishness of each group stepping to the plate promising much for all and diverting that much to the minorities associated with themselves every time. It doesn’t seem to matter what colour skin they are, nor the cultural group they belong to – they are all cut from the same cloth; grown from the same weed. There will never be a leader looking out for the majority in Zimbabwe. The weeds bred in that rich, red soil make sure of it.
Now the point of this post. I watched the violence twenty years ago. I heard the sheep rattling the fence, begging for the farmer (our weedy leader) to distribute the food and water and riches of the land equally to all like a good little communist. I watched the sheep quieten when just a little was given, enough to settle those in the rural places where the suffering was most prolific and the education was minimal. Oh how quickly they acquiesced to the farmer when it was time to vote him out. The same thing is happening now, just different farmers different weeds, same root.
Don’t believe the hype people. Get out of the mindset of sheep sacrificing yourselves for the same evil that has existed for too many years. Be aware of what you’re wishing into power.
Surely someone better exists beyond the limitations of weeds now standing there, declaring transparency and fairness? Or am I as disillusioned as the rest?
Image courtesy of buildingontheworld.org