By Jacob Mafume
When Roy Bennett was named the Deputy Minister of Agriculture, the general folk in Manicaland cried foul saying the centre had stolen from the periphery, they wanted him appointed the Governor of Manicaland instead.
The lesson we learn from the story is that we have to be crocodiles at home and lizards abroad than being crocodiles abroad and lizards at home.
For Roy Bennett both descriptions do not apply he was a hero at home and abroad, he earned it.
On the contrary the people who persecuted him back at home were lizards at home and crocodiles abroad, one such individual is obviously Robert Mugabe a little-big man whose name was big even at UN General Assemblies while his people in the motherland are still wallowing in poverty of his creation.
We in the PDP and the MDC Alliance family are proud to celebrate the life Roy and Heather. The latter was also a fighter in her own right. She in the absence of Roy also stood up against ZANU PF in Chimanimani, we take off our hats for her. We count our losses.
The democratic family is indebted to the Bennets for their desire for a better Zimbabwe, their efforts were made in a hostile environment manned by evil gatekeepers keen to stop democratisation efforts by any means necessary.
Roy was arrested and charged with all sorts of frivolous and strange allegations including insurgence, banditry and sabotage.
Victimised and assaulted but remained resolute and committed to the cause. He was discriminated and denied a legitimate opportunity to serve as a Minister in the Government of National Unity.
Family property was forfeited by thugs who were a law unto themselves, many Zimbabweans faced the same problem , some are still in courts trying to reclaim what is rightfully theirs.
More worryingly he was forced out of the country by the continued persecution; many other Zimbabweans are in exile for the same reason.
In honour of his efforts we must ensure no one is forced out of the motherland in the future. In other words we must continue to fight for a holistic transformation of our society.
We owe it to all the eagles and angels some who died in direct line of duty to continue with the struggle until we reach another Zimbabwe. A Zimbabwe which promotes a sustainable, just,free and democratic society in which people enjoy prosperous, happy and fulfilling lives.
It is this Zimbabwe that Roy and Heather wanted to see. Huge epitaphs must be attached to their tombs with the following inscription.
“Here rests Roy and Heather Bennet they loved their country.”
May their Souls Rest in Eternal Peace.
Jacob Mafume is the opposition PDP Spokesperson (A member of the MDC Alliance Information Committee)