By Tinomudaishe Chinyoka
There are many things going wrong at once in our prodigious land, things that give you a pain at the bleeding of the motherland and makes you want to weep, weep, weep, weep until you cannot anymore and then you just laugh because, what else can you do?
I wrote most of this piece years back, but it bears revising because it really is time.
That great poet, Leonard Zhakata (for what is a musician if not a poet?) had it right when he said ‘kana ndichishaura batai mazwi, kuitira mangwana. Vamwe vanozodudzira nepasipo, vamwe ndevanofamba vachiti hazvisi zvake”.
We are in the third week of what promises to be the longest and costliest funeral in our country, if not the entire world when compared against national GDP. And there doesn’t seem to be an end to all the ghoulish stories, and the relatives. Ahh, the relatives.
Quite what we owe this family, only time will tell but, going by what’s happening, our great grand children will still be repaying them at the rate that we are going.
Patrick Zhuwao claims that his uncle died in exile, while a Mr Molai claimed that he was at home and only went into hospital the last week. Of course, a person can have a home in exile, but you don’t get visited by the Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet of the country you have fled from if you truly are in exile.
Patrick Zhuwao is of course the former law student who became a minister before he was a student, and also spent time being busy dying for this country as the chairperson of a Zesa subsidiary, despite having no degree in electronics or other qualification besides the fact that his uncle died for this country before his said death. .
Zesa of course was the fiefdom of a Mr Gata, whose likely best qualification for the post was probably that he married the sister of the now deceased. Not sure if he ever called RGM a president ‘par excellence’ but you doubt if he didn’t. .
Walter Chidakwa, another family member, was busy crying recently about how his relative was bitter in the end, exhorting is all to feel shame and collective guilt that we removed him from power.
Chidhakwa of course confirmed to any doubters that when he had been deployed as Minister of Mines, because the family owning our diamonds was not enough, they had to run the whole ministry, otherwise others might die for the country in there..
When President Mnangagwa opened a road link in the eastern part of Zimbabwe, he remarked that there was so much money in Zinara , and that they hadn’t known where it was going to. Albert Mugabe had been deployed as chairman of Zinara, dying for the country under the weight of all that money pouring in from toll booths put over potholes: you pay for the privilege to have your car test the durability of your factory installed shock absorbers..
Did you ever wonder why we were fed that lie about Simba (the First Son-in-Law) being a pilot with Emirates? Might it have been a ruse to smooth his way into a ministry or other department?
Well, it got him running a pirate version of Air Zimbabwe while drawing an obscene salary from the real Air Zimbabwe for a while. Remember the time he flew those airplanes from Malaysia and we were told they were national assets? Despite them really allegedly belonging to a company with the First Daughter and First Son in Law as directors of course.
Whatever did happen to those national assets I wonder?
After all, anyone who has been a pilot can conceivably be a Cabinet Minister: you do not fly a jumbo jet unless you know a thing or two. But, as they say, blood will tell. Boy showed up at his wedding dressed like Koffie Olomide and we all knew this was no pilot. And those pictures from Singapore did not improve his image one bit.
They display their wealth in a land of want, well fed faces at the table with cutlery showing four or five course meals. Then they betray their crassness by talking about guarding a corpse in case someone does something to it and you must wonder, what do they know about corpses she rituals?
We are fed ‘leaks’ about how the government is not helping, yet at every step of the way it looks like government is footing the bills. What really is going on?
Back to Mugabe being a President ‘par excellence’ as claimed: I think we need help as a people. It’s not just that author, it’s a vast majority of our people. The man wasn’t removed in a coup because he was excellent, he really was terrible in the end. Saying that is just being factual.
It doesn’t take away the good that he did, especially at the beginning, but it does mean hyperbole must be kept in check. A child that’s raised by a man in a very loving and caring environment and is sent to the best schools to get the best education but then gets raped by the same person does not lose anything by calling the man a rapist. It doesn’t take away the good he did at the beginning , but just puts it in context.
This family seems to me to be very ungrateful. They clearly feel that since their person died for this country, they must enjoy the spoils. Sadly, in so doing, they are creating new narratives of resentment. There will one day be a reckoning.
Tinomudaishe Chinyoka is a Harare based lawyer