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Independence Celebration 2014 – President Mugabe no longer fit to officiate

By Farai Mbira

As we celebrate this year’s independence we remember the struggle for independence itself and the many that did not make it. We are compelled to reflect on how far our national aspirations have progressed.

President Mugabe
President Mugabe

In many of our independence commemorations it has always been about President Mugabe and how he was so magnanimous in liberating us poor souls. Zimbabweans United for Democracy ZUNDE believes that the people liberated themselves and this day was meant for all. ZUNDE respects everyone who made a contribution, no matter how small, and believes that we can finish off from where we left and be finally free.

It is quite sad that we have virtually nothing to show for our independence. For this reason, many of our people no longer celebrate independence but rather, commemorate it. There is nothing to celebrate when the nation is virtually on its knees; not praying but falling down! The only thing worth celebrating is the heroics of those that fought and brought down the Ian Smith racist regime.

That is worth celebrating, The young men and women who fought and won a battle in which they were outnumbered, out resourced and outgunned demonstrated that battles are won by resolve more than by resources. ZUNDE is calling for the revival of such resolve, determination and patriotism. If we are united we can defeat this dictatorship that has reduced us to slaves in our own backyard. We can spend eternity mourning about our situation but if we don’t do anything about it we are only sealing our fate in perpetual poverty and shame. The gap between slavery and freedom is called ACTION.

A true celebration is about freely outpouring gratitude. If Zimbabwe was free we would all be eager to be part of giving and not shoving each other into a stadium because not being there is dangerous. If we are free must we be forcing people to close shops and herd them like cattle to listen to the President? If we were free would we be sending the notorious Green Bombers to ensure no one is left behind? My countrymen and women, this is not freedom. Why is it then that we are forced to celebrate freedom? President Mugabe and those who claim to know must explain.

My own reflections are that April 18 1980 was a special day for a freedom fighter. It meant an end to the horrors of war and that one could now go home and reunite with almost lost loved ones. No one was forced to celebrate. It is a day I cannot forget. Every time it comes I am forced to reflect back on what went before it and I almost always remember my good friends Mike Hamadzeropa, Family Man (Doc) and Ndoda Honda who did not make it. I also remember my last section members Chingwa Chaoma, Felix Zvichapera, Tonds Kutota, Otenda, Tafirenyika, Tichafara Magorira, Dzikamai Cha-Hot, Mabhunu Muchapera, Oliver, DK Dunga Kwaks.

I also pay tribute to the young lady Theressa Muganda of Chigondo village in Wedza whose bravery and cheerfulness we used to sing about. I salute them because, to me, independence could not have been possible without such ordinary brave men and women who gave everything even though they are not remembered now. Their courage, simplicity and unselfish sacrifices are a perpetual rebuke to President Mugabe and his Zanu PF thugs. They are the true but unsung heroes of our struggle for independence.

To kick off the commemorations, I would like to ask you President Mugabe to do the nation a favour. On the morning of 18 April as you put on your many medals could you please just promise to look around as they drive you through the streets to the National Sports Stadium. Listen carefully when they start to call you commander of everything – state, government, armed forces, Zanu PF etc.

Ask Mr Charamba what all this really means. If you allow him to tell you the truth he will tell you that it means you are responsible for whatever has become of all these institutions! Yes they are saying to the world that you commanded and drove the country, the state, the army and Zanu PF to where it is now – completely broken. They take you as a joke Mr President. Just remember how they made you lie to the Chiefs about the diamond cheques. Had they any respect for you they would not have abused you to this extent. You are just an ATM machine to them.

Mr President, as you approach National Sports Stadium, please judge for yourself if you like what you see and announce the conclusion before your official speech. Tell the people you like what you saw; the unemployed youth mingling hopelessly in the streets, the empty dilapidated hospitals, the filthy streets, the smell from stagnant and blocked sewers, the starving human skeletons standing on the roadsides to the stadium and required to smile and wave at you. Just ask yourself why your security details are agitated and on the edge; aren’t you among your people and isn’t it freedom day! What are you scared of?

President Mugabe you have betrayed the struggle to the extent that celebrating independence with you is difficult without implying approval of your evil. Many people are reluctant to celebrate with you not because they don’t want to be free, but that they find it repugnant to stand in the same big tent with you and your evil men and women.

It is very difficult for someone whose parents were butchered during Gukurahundi, whose only shelter was razzed to the ground during Murambatsvina and whose sisters were raped during Mugabe’s 2008 Mavhoterapapi election violence to stand in the same tent with you and your team. Only without conscience can someone whose farm was violently taken away give support to Mugabe’s evil. Unless without conscience will anyone who has seen their business wilting under the scourge of Zanu PF and its corruption support any event superintended over by you and these evil men and women around you.

It is ironic that independence is celebrated more by the hangers on than by the very people who fought for it. President Mugabe you must respect the sacredness of our people and their history by excusing yourself from this year’s independence celebrations. That you cannot officiate; especially give the key note speech, over anything to do with freedom is no longer debatable. This is because you, in connivance with reactionary elements in the military and mercenary reactionaries in the Zanu PF junta, have demonstrated beyond doubt that you were and is a hyena in sheep’s clothing. We revered you but you betrayed us.

One thing that hurts us much more is that new hyenas, donning seemingly democracy credentials, are taking advantage of what has remained of us. Some of them have slept with Zanu PF and now they pretend they did not enjoy the night. Last year before the elections they were telling us that their marriage with Zanu PF was not working and now they are calling for a second marriage with the same Zanu PF.

They didn’t really want to divorce Zanu PF for they considered it a hardworking husband good at milking the innocent sheep. Some of them had the privilege of driving the pro-democracy movement and, adamantly and chanting there was no other way, crushed the pro-democracy movement into the GNU ditch. They see nothing wrong with that and are now talking of a grand coalition. Haven’t we been saying this since July 31st and nobody listened? What has changed?

At ZUNDE we are saying Zanu PF has no future for our nation. Mugabe can rant all day at National Sports Stadium but we know what awaits us outside the stadium; hunger and violence. We are warning the people that there are many false prophets out there looking for whom they may devour. ZUNDE’s ideas are sacred; they don’t work with an evil heart. Don’t fall for their long speeches and numerous media articles. Some of them are deliberately created and funded by Zanu PF and CIO to paralyse ZUNDE. They can try but they won’t succeed. We may die but more will survive and see and experience freedom.

As for the people of Zimbabwe, our message is that freedom is not cheap. If we want it we go get it! We are slaves because we love freedom less. But hope is beckoning; ZUNDE will deliver us from this bottomless pit dug by Mugabe and his Zanu PF leadership. The time has come that we reclaim our freedom, dignity and humanity. My fellow countrymen and women, let not your hearts be troubled; our true independence day is coming. ZUNDE is now home and working with you on the ground.

To our people and all the genuine freedom fighters I say Happy Independence Day – may it NOW be as we wished. We did our part and we meant it. Although now shamefully betrayed by our former commanders, we were loyal and pure in heart. Comrades, wipe off your tears and join with our people, dust your feet and answer the call. The fight for real freedom has now resumed”.

Farai Mbira, President – ZUNDE