Beyond election rhetoric: Which way for region?

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THERE are some individuals and career mourning organisations whose focus and interest is to ensure that Matabeleland as a region and its people become professional mourners when it comes to issues of national interest.

Qhubani Moyo

So meticulously designed are their programmes that they have even believed that they are appointed spokespersons of the people of this region.

A close scrutiny of their operations reveals that they exist to perpetuate a syndrome of inducing hopelessness among the people of the region to an extent that they have surrendered their destiny and feel they are not part of Zimbabwe at all.

In many instances these organisations and individuals want to project an impression of a glorious past in the name of some imaginary republic using the term Mthwakazi.

One such organisation that is living under such an illusion is the one called Mthwakazi Youth Leaders Joint Resolution (MYLJR) whose real membership remains unknown, but whose spokesman is Mqondisi Moyo who was fired from the position of Zapu youth chairmanship under circumstances that can be subject of discussion in the public sphere should he want it to happen that way.

In the Southern Eye of October 24 2013, Moyo took a shot at me using MYJR (whatever that resolution is) under some illusion that it has the locus standi to speak for as a sole authoritative voice of Matabeleland and when it does so it thinks one should have a right because they have given themselves some demi-god status on issues of Matabeleland.

Whatever resolution they made, whereever they did, which resolution we are not privy to, it is time for them and others to begin to know and understand that problems affecting Matabeleland are intricate and therefore the solutions are multidimensional.

But what is clearly not going to be one of the solutions is one that wants to give an impression that Matabeleland should isolate itself from the rest of Zimbabwe and retreat to some imaginary republic which represents retrogressive nostalgia.

What is not disputable is that from the time of independence of this country the region has had its huge share of problems including gross human rights violations and marginalisation.

The net effect of this is that most of people in the region especially young people, grew up with a negative perception about the government as an institution, but (especially of Zanu PF) as a political party.

But because there has been no distinction between the government and the ruling party the tendency has been to shun association with both.

This meant that they shunned and closed out completely any thing that came with the government and many would prefer going to South Africa to look for new opportunities, but most importantly as a way of disassociating themselves with these institutions which were viewed rightly or wrongly as institutions of brutality and marginalisation of the people of the region.

The generations that have come over the years have found this cliché of marginalisation and very few have tried to confront the situation from a different angle other than being part of a pressure group or opposition political parties.

In the process, there has been complete closure to engagement with the Zanu PF government as the deep-seated preoccupation has been to punish President Robert Mugabe before he dies and the best form of punishment will be to hand him a painful defeat in the elections.

And indeed Bulawayo thought they could deliver the sucker punch and of cause it was their democratic right, but the election results showed that it is dangerous to assume that the whole country thinks in a linear fashion because we remain stuck with Morgan Tsvangirai while the rest of Zimbabwe has moved on with Zanu PF.

What this means is that going forward we must as a result move to substitute the political preferences we made with into realities of growth in the region and that is only possible if we stop shunning the government and work in collaboration with it to strengthen our foothold on national issues.

Regrettably there are those who think we should not look for national opportunities and that when they are made available we should shun them and continue with anger.

It is my conviction that if opportunities arise for anyone to serve in whatever capacity in the government or any other related institution, we should take them and use them to advance national interest as well a the interests of the people of the region.

It is unfortunate that Mqondisi Moyo and his warlords decided to interpret my statement out of the context it was presented because I maintain that if opportunities arise and we don’t take them people from other regions would take them and we will continue crying that we are marginalised.

That is what I said and will not stop saying so because part of making the region reflect on how to play a meaningful role in national development is to engage in self-introspection and point at realities that weaken us.

But as usual those who are always unwilling to apply their minds to the real Matabeleland problems like Mqondisi Moyo will continue to be simplistic and attempt to cast aspersions at some of us including comparisons with Inos Nkala and that we will be haunted by our opinions.

Well opinions are personal and not prescriptions and will be received differently and I will not force any one to receive them the way they don’t want.

But to swear that I will be haunted for my entire life by my opinions, is simplistic to say the least unless if Mqondisi Moyo is now some kind of isangoma esitshaya amathambo (spirit medium).

My conclusion is that it is not just retrogressive, but dangerous naïvety to want to be simplistic about the problems of Matabeleland and want to reduce them to rhetorical questions like Qhubani Moyo wanted to woodwink the people of Insiza North and then dump them in Zanu PF?

The reality is it is actually the people of Insiza and indeed all the 13 constituencies who went to Zanu PF against us as a preference.

One can conclude that maybe it is actually us who wanted to take them from their preferred party Zanu PF and not vice-versa.

The greater question beyond the usual complaints and mourning is how then does Matabeleland as a region position itself beyond politics to ensure that it works closely with the government to create new opportunities and utilise existing ones so that the region benefits from the national cake?

Crying alone without action will not help the region and if the government of Zimbabwe led by Zanu PF is willing to correct its previous mistakes and work for the development of the region then lets embrace and support the efforts and stop being negative and cry babies like Mqondisi Moyo and his gang.

 Qhubani Moyo is a public policy expert in Bulawayo.

1 COMMENT

  1. Dr Q.Moyo; did you know that Mqondis Moyo a CIO informer? He has nothing to do with the rights of people of Matebeleland. MYJR is a CIO project.

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