‘When drunk I shall rape mama’

Stephen Mpofu

IF wishes were horses the supreme horse/wish to ride for Zimbabweans and other Africans who freed themselves from the menacing jaws of foreign ruling cultures would be to be governed ad infitum by successive generations of super-agers.

Super-ageing scientifically refers to people who reach the advanced age of eighty and above with their cortex, the outer grey matter of brain, still thick instead of shrinking so that their brains remain the same as those of younger people.

Consequently super agers remain active, read a lot so that they are able to continually tell the difference between good and bad and engage in social relations.]

Super agers do not grow on trees. However, since good governance is God’s will, surely providence should by God’s grace grow leaders in political, social and economic structures who work tirelessly to fulfil their commitments that are commensurate with the will of the Almighty.

Now any mention in Zimbabwe of Operation Restore Legacy by the Defence Forces four months ago sends this communicologist trotting down memory lane back to the village in the Midlands province where he was born and bred among a bilingual community where foot stamping imbibers celebrating rich harvests rendered a popular tune — which now proves to have been prophetic — while we youngsters watched also dancing and singing

Ngingasutha (utshwala) ngizatshaya umama
(Handisati ndaguta
Kana ndaguta (doro) ndicharova amai)

A Rhodesian Native Commissioner was cheered by chiefs and herdsmen and their policemen — whom he was about to address — when after failing to sing the hit song in local languages he resorted to his tongue, his squint-eyed African interpreter in tow.

I am not yet full
(But) when I get drunk I shall beat up mother.

Contextually, after reaping a rich harvest of freedom with the coming of independence in April 1980, some Zimbabweans, so it now turns out, started around the third decade to sing the Uhuru celebration song with the words in the last line “to beat up mother” replaced with “to rape mother”.

Some patriots who kept their eyes wide open and their ears on the ground discovered that a clique of inverted political figures was busy raping mother (the motherland), witness the $1,3 billion loot blued out of the country of which $250 million has been repatriated following an ultimatum by the government to the plunderers to return the booty so that now after being stripped virtually naked and exposed to cold, the ruined economy, the motherland has recovered a modicum of warmth, so to speak.

Thus Operation Restore Legacy came — at least to patriots in this country — as a God send to protect the armed revolution in which the gallant sons and daughters of the motherland ran the gauntlet of mosquitoes and snakes and Rhodesian soldiers in ambush — with some of them paying the ultimate price as sacrifice to bring back home a country abducted by foreigners.

But come to think of it. Some Zimbabweans particularly those in exile in the West have been engaged in a vicious viral onslaught on social media as well as on foreign radio against the Zimbabwe Defence Forces for bringing about the new dispensation through Operation Restore Legacy which saw Zimbabwe’s President of nearly 37 years resigning and being replaced by his former Vice President Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa.

The critics of the government, which is fast gaining popularity across the globe, can with equanimity be said to be displaying their ignorance about exactly who the soldiers they are criticising are in the context of the freedom with which some of them were constipated before fleeing the country because they were opposed to the rule of Zanu-PF, favouring instead to be governed by the opposition which remains fractured and engaged in internecine power struggles.

But are the very soldiers now being censured not the very people including the incumbent president or their blood relatives or bosom friends who bore arms against Ian Smith’s largely Rhodesian army which massacred Zimbabwean refugees in Mozambique and Zambia in a failed bid to thwart the liberation of our country?

Of course, they are the same gallant children of the soil and, that being the case must they be expected to smile when fellow blacks in power indulge in corruption and other evil practices to fatten their bellies while the bellies of the masses shrink because the culprits happen to wear the same black skin?

Such a dereliction of the protection of the country against corruption by soldiers regarded as guardians of the nation’s freedom, a legacy of the revolution in which they participated — would certainly be counter revolutionary.

It is indeed a tragic irony that some citizens of this country self-exiled abroad should denounce the same people who fought a brutal bush war to end white racist rule in Rhodesia instead of applauding them for ending the rot that had set in in the latter years of independence.

Instead, Zimbabweans should rally en masse behind the new administration of President Mnangagwa so that the gains of our independence and freedom , hijacked by a few corrupt persons and some of whom fled from the front during the armed struggle may be restored in order for Zimbabwe to regain its march and into a brave new future.

What this also means is that youths belonging to all political parties must eschew violence in campaigns running up to the harmonised elections within the next few months.

The message from the confusion among some Zimbabweans driven by a blind hatred for the ruling Zanu-PF is that the youth of Zimbabwe, as future leaders themselves, those among them and their leaders drunk on skokiaan-freedom and who wish to win the hearts of voters through brutal force are candidates for authoritarian rule in future or, still worse, for weak governments, both of which are a bane to society in the postmodern world where democracy should be practised with jaw not brow serving as voices of the people.

What is even worse is that violence by any political party is seen abroad by potential investors whom this country badly needs to grow the economy and other well-wishers seriously besmirches the image of Zimbabwe as a whole among foreign investors whose capital Zimbabwe badly needs to help grow our shattered economy.

Instead our people should display amity and stability as powerful engines of national development.

In this regard, the chorus by all Zimbabweans at this point in time should be “free, fair and credible elections” as an additional bid to win more friends around the globe and shame the country’s detractors who, ironically, include our own people enjoying the comfort of foreign lands and who may remain in the shade as they wish while Zimbabwe makes huge strides in her political, economic and social emancipation.

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