Comment: Stop setting the poor against each other


The violence that rocked Highfield on Wednesday is a classic example of how politicians in this country turn the poor against each other for political mileage.

Zanu PF supporters reportedly stormed market stalls owned by supposedly MDC supporters in a bid to “repossess” them.

The fact that these people perpetrate violence against their equally poor fellow residents in the name of a political party shows that people in high-density suburbs rise against each other because they are being used by politicians.

Politicians want to pretend that those who do not belong to their party are the cause for their supporters’ pathetic living conditions in order to blind them to the reality that this is a result of social and economic problems resulting from poor governance and corruption.

And of course this is all tied to the pending elections.
The violent crimes committed by poor people against their neighbours is a reflection of the pathetic conditions that they all live in, a situation politicians manipulate to raise emotions.

In essence, politicians should craft policies that deal with poverty, hunger and unemployment instead of setting poor people against each other for political benefit.

It is easy to manipulate the poor to butcher each other because they do not understand the source of their condition.

Poverty in this country should be taken as a moral and social crisis stemming from bad governance by politicians who live in excess.

To justify their excess, immoral politicians proclaim that the poor people’s conditions are a result of politics “from the other side”.

By reason of their selfish interest, these immoral characters deny they have a hand in creating poverty for their fellow citizens.

Political parties with such leaders teach or force the ordinary people to accept degrading and dehumanising actions such as the perpetration of violence against their peace-loving neighbours who are equally struggling to eke out a living through small, informal businesses.

The poor are given a sense of power through impunity as they never face arrest for crimes they commit on behalf of politicians while ironically, their victims are locked behind bars.

Innocent people are killed or maimed while hundreds others are displaced as political parties with tired ideologies unleash violence on them.

The sane ones who raise voices when barbaric violence is perpetrated against their neighbours and friends are also victimised.

Our clueless politicians are turning a political crisis into a social one with serious humanitarian consequences that intensify problems for the very people they abuse.

Poor people’s problems cannot be solved by setting them against each other and neither can they be solved by encouraging them to rob each other.
This madness must just stop.