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Where are Zim’s leaders?

Local News
Is it time we all asked ourselves where Zimbabwe’s leaders are?

THERE comes a time when one has to look up and ask: “Hey guys, what’s our problem?”

This calls for deep introspection. All the hardships experienced everyday are the signs and symptoms of a deep national malaise.

What explains the deepening political and economic crises?

What explains the sheer lack of workable solutions to these problems?

What explains the fact that in the past 20 years the same problems have occurred and recurred yet those in positions of responsibility have used the same failed methods to try to solve them?

Is it time we all asked ourselves where Zimbabwe’s leaders are?

Whenever that question pops up, people look to the same political leadership that has buggered this country.

They look to the leadership of the ruling Zanu PF party and the main opposition Citizen Coalition for Change; never at themselves.

This political binary has stifled the emergence of new voices and new ideas, and spawned a culture of acquiescence among the majority that has helped entrench the intractable problems the country is facing.

This has to change. People must begin to emerge from their cocoons and face reality, and that reality is that Zimbabwe’s leaders are in each one of us!

Once in a while, a leader who is not corrupted by the current political dichotomy emerges bringing a lot of promise.

I will cite Evan Mawarire of the #ThisFlag movement.

He galvanised Zimbabweans in opposition to Robert Mugabe’s rule.

He is often accused of having been someone’s project but he showed what is possible when an individual comes out of the woodwork to champion a cause.

Jacob Ngarivhume is another such. He emerged about a decade ago when he formed a political party, Transform Zimbabwe.

At its launch, he implored Mugabe to allow peaceful political activities without hindrance, harassment, threats of prosecution or the abuse of power by State security agencies, a message he continued to preach until his incarceration.

Now he is languishing in prison, unknown and forgotten.

People failed to recognise the leader in him even when he had several run-ins with the police since 2014.

I should add to this list the coming in of popular journalist-cum-political activist Hopewell Chin’ono who has used adversarial journalism to push the national cause.

Fadzayi Mahere, to me, also makes the list.

These are people who have recognised the leaders in themselves and have sought to make a difference at a huge cost to their own freedoms.

World history is replete with such characters. Fidel Castro (Cuba), Mao Zedong (China), Nelson Mandela (South Africa), Gamal Abdel Nasser (Egypt), Amilcar Cabral (Guinea Bissau) and Thomas Sankara (Burkina Faso) quickly come to mind.

Zimbabwe had its own such characters, Herbert Chitepo, Ndabaningi Sithole, Joshua Nkomo and others who rose to lead the armed struggle.

These leaders are not God-ordained; they are individuals like you and me who have identified a purpose, larger than themselves, which they wish to live for and make a difference to their country and compatriots.

Zimbabwe is crying out for leadership but its call is like that of a chimera in the desert.

Each of us are the leaders we are waiting for! Lead with purpose and conviction from where you are, with what you have, and Zimbabwe will be better for it.

  • This opinion piece is from the YouTube.com//InConversationWithTrevor and convowithtrevor.com platforms.
  • Nevanji Madanhire is a senior journalist at Alpha Media Holdings

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