Archive | April, 2015

When a human being ages.

23 Apr

we humans keep count of time from when we are born to when it all ends, when the individual’s curtain is drawn. When they say une makore mangani they do not mean how many clouds do you own. As in uleminyaka emingaki, they simply mean how old art thou. So, james, how old art thou?

James was born fifty years ago in circumstances that time has kind of muddled. A number of things have kind of clouded over the years but yes he was born and celebrates his birthday on St George’s day. James has been fortunate to have shared his birthday with some truly wanderful people. I shared a birthday with my sister, MHDSRIP, and I shared a birthday with a niece who I have unintentionally lost contact with. All the same happy birthday to her. I also share my birthday with everyone who celebrate their birthday today. Happy birth day all.

I am happy because of so many things. These include the fact that by statistics I am well above the date at which Zimbabweans are expected to have died, on average anywhere. Zimbabwe’s average life expectancy, though doubtful, is well below 50.I have been involved in many many things that could have taken my life long back. Many of my friends and relatives are gone and being a Christian, I just hope God has plans for me. I am grateful for his grace and celebrate his wishes for me to be where I am today.

When I was 2 years old, my father passed away. The circumstances were such that, following trends of similar, I could have easily died then too. So in case someone thinks these things are about being clever and careful, I couldn’t be either at that lifeless age. So it was just the grace of God that intervened and got me this far along the story of Mother Earth.

When I was 8 a boy I knew climbed a fruit tree that everyone else would climb. I am sure it wasn’t even the first time he had done so. And that was his last climb. He fell, cracked his skull and died. Considering all boys climbed trees for fruit, it could have been me.

I lived my youth,my teen years and young adulthood through a very dangerous time when hiv aids had been created,manufactured or discovered. The discription depends on what you want to believe of the many conspiracy theories. What ever you believe, I grew up at a time when very little was known about the dangers and risk of the disease. I was together with everyone in danger and with no special effort, I have lived well beyond many friends. I am shocked and my heart skips a bit as I recall the days and the things that could have befallen me.

In my lifetime I have been held hostage by political malcontents, the type that could have slit my throat and smiled out a scud induced stench. (Scud= local brew). I have heard of horrendous stories following similar abductions. Yet without being innocent and without being special I lived to tell my story.

I have been in car crashes. All were bad ones. I am sure there have been three of my own. I have a story of selected sparing, where I was too lazy to run for a lift to chitungwiza one morning. The driver had no patience to wait for my pace and sped off. A few minutes later we caught up with his flaming car and dead bodies. What ever one thinks I am just grateful to tell the story of my life in a way that highlights the near misses and the moment I was spared. It is stupid to those who live by luck. I don’t, I live by blind faith, believing in a God I don’t see.

Yet too I am a simple man. I don’t have a lot yet I have enough for me and my only daughter. I have done well academically, managing two qualifications in a lifetime. Not a very normal way but that’s how I have chosen to model myself. I am not bad in what I do. While I owe the world both socially and financially, I have not cheated anyone of their dues. I have not had something from someone unfairly and that’s a legacy I am proud of. I was born with absolutely nothing, like all humans, and built myself to that which I have.

I have friends, mostly met through study, work or through church. I have made many in my lifetime. Remembering the Tafaras in my childhood in gweru those many moons ago. There came the WEbster,the late Ezekiel, Siniwa,Never,TAvei,Simba, Timothy, Elliot, JAmes, Farai,Mavis (late), morelight, Emilia, Geasy,Jeremy,Kuda, Jane, right up to those I still befriend today. With or without favourites among them I am happy for those that have run the course this far with me and hope we together run whatever remains of our God given grace to live.

African Union formerly the organisation of African unity.

16 Apr

on hearing Africa announce the formation of the organisation of African unity just over 50 years ago, a western political publican is said to have remarked,”since when have Africans been organised.” It is strange that this somehow feels insulting and true at the same time. It is like an insulting fact, if you see what I mean. More like how an ugly person will feel when someone says to them,”futseki kushata.” It is true yet it is insulting. Got it?

How can it not be true when you look at it squarely, even the leaders noticed the truth in that and decided to change their name to another misnomer again. African Union? On this one they are not alone as I believe even the self styled mighty EU is not quite a unity. Uhm, then Union is not just in the word. One would humbly hope it is in actions, for all to see and exclaim, those are united people.

The problems Africa goes through are so embarrassing and silly that one would think it is a nation or nations on auto rule. Auto rule in the sense of a free falling policy making, a bobbing economy, a one man military defence centered on the ruling elite and a shop full of poverty. The leaders are mean to their citizens and have laws enacted against even squinting at their pictures which are in every office as a reminder of who is in charge.I find it difficult to criticise that concept because kana dzoro rambuya, mai Charles ritori pa mapondo nemapenny ese.

The problem with the African Union is not money, well they have no money anywhere, but…. Their real problem is they are devoid of principles. They are a total come together of selfish men taking turns to show off suits and ties all in most cases acquired from the very nations or economies they love to hate. I will count their short comings .

They do not stand for the truth when the nearest challenge is the embarrassment of their colleague. I am almost certain that Robert Mugabe did not attend the inaugural meeting of the OAU those many years ago. Maybe it’s trivial, but when the zimbabwe state press went home with a misfact that he was a founding father, non of them would dare challenge it. In case there is someone thinking so what? Yes exactly my point. The truth is the first rain of integrity. Unless you stand for the truth no matter how small, you have not yet reached that quality which makes man worth his socks.

I am also of a very low opinion of the AU because of their lack of commitment to specific African problems. I still have to hear an African leader, an African nation, saying anything about the xenophobic attacks and unprovoked murders happening in South Africa. It is interesting to note that the people being slashed and roasted are not just Zimbabweans, or Mozambicans who happen in some cases to be related to South Africans. The victims are from wider Africa. A victim, formerly a shop owner is reported saying, ” I would rather go back and die in my country…..” He was from Somalia. There are Kenyans, there are Malawians, Nigerians, Senegalese, Zambians and many other African nationals. And the so called African father’s say anything? 

Another problem that drains my tears is the story of Africans drowning in the Mediterranean waters trying to flee their homes for Europe. We are talking of Libyans,Egyptians, Algeria and some sub Saharan African nations perishing in the waters at the mercy of nothing.we always hear them dying in hundreds. Last time 400+ died while the African Union was in sessionary talk shows in Ethiopia. Recently and I mean maybe last week 200 were feared dead. Surprisingly Europe seems more concerned. Obviously they do not want the burden that comes with the dying of these people. Yet African Union a come together of their national father’s has not even a single moment of their business to discuss the dying of their children.

Africa is so fragmented that even talking of the possibility of United States of Africa is as much a dream as someone wishing they could wake up one day to find they have wings. The national leaders pick their friends according to who they can benefit from. There are some who are so poor that they make zimbabwe top shopping destination. Others are so rich that looking at zim they almost always refuse anything to do with the. 

The current chairperson of the au is one well read Robert Mugabe. The man has no clue running his own country, which he has severely polarised and also impoverished. If chairmanship was like state presidency I would warn everyone who cares to know to runaway and hide. The guy is just a political light weight whose ace is violence of cannibalist level. 

The soul of democracy

14 Apr

i have never been so interested in the ongoing run up to elections in the UK like I have this time around. Of cause I know how I will vote and who exactly will have my vote. I have known the person for many years and if everyone had Basingstoke in mind then they would all vote for this candidate from a massive party. Don’t say I didn’t tip you, it’s not the ruling party.

In my close following of the UK election I have not lost the fact of life that lingers in my looks and in my accent. That I am an African. That I come from Southern Africa. That I come from zimbabwe. That more than a decade later I am still a registered voter in my city of Bulawayo. No I have not forgotten that the freedom to campaign, be campaigned to, vote freely is a freedom that I would not have in my own country. It is in my country where my alternative choice from the ruling party is seen as treason. Not just by an illiterate activist but the real police force, or the candidate themselves.

Obviously this is a developed country, developed in many ways more than my own country but certainly developed in terms of democracy. There are no jingles giving one party unfair inclination. There is no chimurenga slogans shouted out on TV and a minute by minute reminder of blood and bullets and the return of AK wielding sons of the soil. There are not shirts,( to my chagrin). There are no people toy toying singing menacingly like the gang that wanted to force us to shout zanupf slogans way back for no reason than that we met them on a rural road.

I am actually digressing from my real point. My point is the expectation of delivery that is held of anyone including a party that all can say with confidence that it will never rule. That delivery expectation is based on a detailed scrutiny of promises, manifestos and honest discussions. There are no promises of ” ndokuunzirai devoopmendi”, no there is not. There is no chance of a grade 2’drop out making it to parliament because would he jump the hurdle of explaining his role and the budget of his promise?

Look, I have always held this that be it in Africa,Asia or Europe, the fact is an MP is a legislator, a law maker and not a development agent. Any MP who wows his voters by saying he will bring development is talking a secondary part of his job and is lying. Lying because MPs do not get a budget allocation for driving constitutional development and therefore can not sustain a promise of development. If we could grill these members of parliament I bet they have no clue how much the road he is promising would need. Right now we have a Twitter regular and aspiring MP For tsholotsho cde Jonathan.  As soon as an election loomed Jonathan suddenly announced he would build a stadium for the local soccer team. Interesting. If we were to ask how much money is needed I am sure he would go into an abusive tirade that I renown him for.

Then it turns out, though he does not know the budget of the stadium he has found the funding. Hurray! he wants a few elephants shot and the money indirectly raised, to be used for the stadium project. To his credit, this is a last minute plan and coming up with even a plan of that level is genius of Jonathan .

My point is in the UK election that I say I have been following with interest, the parties can not claim to make financial sticks and carrot without saying how they will raise funding for the. Saying we will creat 2 million jobs must be followed by how it will make this possible. Claiming that one will build more schools, should be substantiated by how the proposed many schools will be funded. 

This is where we would be found wanting. We would lose all the muhlupheki ndubos of our politics because they would struggle to be that open and honest. Imagine what chinos would promise the people of buhera, ” ndokuvakirayi zvipatara nemaclinic” then some clever villager, “Mari yacho ichibvepi uye iri mariyi cde?” Chinos, ” unobvunzaani ane chipatara, ma youth Batai benzi re chinja iro!”

We certainly need to be mature in politics so that our legislators are clever people who can create real reasonable legislation and not sleep in sessions. We should vote in people who will see the need to complement the constitution with laws and not the current crop from both ZANU and mdc who just sit in parliament for a chance of cheap gvt issued cars. People who when parliament is in session they keep track of our laws and create an environment that befits all our nation’ s business.

Imagine the grade 2 drop out listening to the minister of finance introducing a change of policy or introducing financial legislation. Even if he was born on a pile of encyclopaedia he would have no clue. The policies pass unchallenged and in their defective form remnant of chinamasa’ ineptitude they sail through and we as a nation are stuffed. 

In the meantime Mugabe comes and addresses the parliament. Instead of challenging or consolidating his speech with legislative and policy content, the MPs we have fall into one another praising the newly found religious icon of their party. Instead of being any better the opposition ones will be singing a refrain that only discordant their ruling party in lyrics but in tune in terms of uselessness.

I wish one day we will have elections and a democracy that is devoid of violence, a one sided taxpayer funded media, a tool like police force, an army that doubles as an official campaign force, a ruling party that does not view anything of the state as its own. Well I will dream on and on and on and on………..

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