Zim’s Independence now an empty shell

AS we celebrated on Tuesday 37 years of Independence from colonial rule, I thought of the thousands of war heroes who died during the liberation struggle and national heroes like former Vice-president Joshua Nkomo, Zanla commander Josiah Tongogara, Zipra commander Lookout Masuku and Herbert Chitepo, who now must be turning in their graves as Zimbabwe has frightfully become the exact opposite of what they fought for.

Candid Comment Faith Zaba

Zimbabwe is now almost a replica of the Rhodesian police state liberation war combatants despised; marked by gross human rights abuses, repression and intimidation of those expressing dissent to President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF’s tyranny. Economic degeneration has worsened poverty, widely shown by rampant unemployment levels.

Impoverishment in the country has more than tripled between 1990 and now from around 25% to more than 90%.

Around 96% of those living in rural areas are forced to live on less than US$1 per day. Joblessness, which according to the International Labour Organisation stands at 95%, continues to escalate due to endless company closures and massive retrenchments.

Vendor population, which includes graduates, has swelled across all cities, pointing to government’s dismal policy failure. Ironically, Zimbabweans are suffering despite the country boasting of vast and rich mineral resources.

In a letter to Mugabe dated June 7 1983, while in exile in the United Kingdom, Nkomo said: “I write because I feel that our country is in danger of complete disintegration, to the detriment of all its citizens now living and of generations to come.

“This is not government; it is the abuse of government, an abuse which transforms the rule of law into the law of rule. As such it cannot lead to a free, united, peaceful and prosperous Zimbabwe. But to one in which oppression, division, violence and poverty will shadow all our hopes, and make a mockery of the freedom struggle in which so many heroes gave their lives,” he added.

Indeed, Zimbabwe has really become a travesty and unimaginable given the sacrifice the majority made to liberate it. That we are now commemorating this great achievement, which has become synonymous with poverty, is a total injustice.
The country’s hard-won Independence has been corrupted, bastardised and reduced to a mockery; a complete farce. War combatants fought for prosperity and emancipation. Certainly, Independence was not meant to perpetuate suffering and force disgruntled citizens into exile.

After inheriting an economy whose currency was stronger than the United States dollar and at par with the British pound, no one could imagine the country would be crippled to become a “goat” economy without its own currency.

Independence is now an empty shell and travesty of what could have been, with nothing to show for the sacrifices made by the freedom fighters and rural folk who bore the brunt of the liberation struggle. Nkomo warned in 1980 that Zimbabwe should be careful not to elect another Idi Amin.

4 thoughts on “Zim’s Independence now an empty shell”

  1. Janana wa Bikaz says:

    The difference between Smith’s government and Mugabe’s government is that during the Smith regime jobs were in abundance and there were no shortages of cash.In the industrial areas when you were strolling around during your lunch time you could be asked by some companies human resources personnel whether you wanted to be employed by their company and you could just tell them that you were on your lunch break,and you were just strolling around to kill time.The zanu pf regime has perfected the art of oppressing people.Where in the world have you seen a country which is not in a civil war failing to have its own national currency?

  2. Simon Gumede says:

    It is unfair to compare Zimbabwe with the Rhodesian police state. The Rhodesian economy was alive and kicking the Zimbabwean one is dead. Teachers and nurses (black) could afford cars during those bad racist days but our teachers can neither afford houses or cars and mainly don’t have the same resources they had under Ian Smith. We have actually become a joke. Smith talked about “no majority rule in a thousand years”. We laughed him off but the truth is that we are run by a Mafia and Fake revolutionaries

  3. Jongwe Rachembera says:

    Faith if you want to be taken seriously, get your facts right and don’t distort history. Rhodesia had its own currency and people did not starve or die of cholera and there was no load shedding. If you speak to many older Zimbabweans in both urban and rural areas they will tell you life was better in Smith’s Rhodesia.

  4. Musona says:

    This thing about independence is a myth. Black people were living miserable lives before whites came in 1890. And are living miserable lives now when whites have left. There was absolutely nothing wrong with life in Southern Rhodesia. Rhodesia was the second most prosperous economy in Africa. The notion that a black government was going to do better for the people than whites is simply idiotic. In Rhodesia if you were intrepid enough the sky was the limit. Mind you blacks were exempt from paying income tax and black businesses were exempt from paying corporation tax.
    If you have all the facts then you will find there was nothing wrong with white rule. Excellent hospitals, excellent schools, excellent police force, good industries, good economy, jobs galore.
    Independence??? What a load of tosh.

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