Thursday, September 01, 2011

General Mujuru: Legacy of Our Struggle in Zimbabwe

Gen Mujuru: Legacy of our struggle

Thursday, 01 September 2011 02:00
Zimbabwe Herald
Albert Nhamoyebonde

I am sure many people felt they had to identify with this legacy of the liberation movement being brought to us all by the untimely death of the man who epitomised this quest for a free Zimbabwe against untold adversity.

How enriched we would have been if he had left his memoirs for posterity?

But should we lose sight to what the liberation struggle meant to him and his comrades in arms?

No! What does this sacrifice mean for us? Many may want to identify with the liberation movement for ulterior motives but what the General stood for and his colleagues has to be fulfiled by politicians.

A war involves fighting with guns until one side wins, but to fulfil what the war was all about is the hardest hurdle for the politicians.

After the war, there should be peace while the politicians are mapping out how to preserve the ethos of the liberation movement.

Unfortunately, the nature of politics is different from waging a war. A war may have a time limit but politics is an ongoing struggle, not with guns or fist fights, but a battle of ideas.

The major components of this battle are the end results which cannot be achieved by politicians alone but by the generality of the people.

The people must be persuaded to accept these ideas that will lead to their emancipation, which is the freedom to think for themselves and how they can contribute to the betterment of their society.

Without this freedom of thought and acceptance of ideas to free themselves from poverty and economic bondage, the legacy of the liberation struggle would be just a pipedream. If we fail to accept the economic sacrifice in order to build and create wealth for our nation, the struggle to free this nation would have been in vain.

Today, we stand on the threshold of mapping out and to define what this nation should be with the writing of the most important document of any nation, the Constitution. At stake is not only a document with ideas from other nations but a document which embodies the legacy of our freedom for which so many perished on our behalf.

As many people have written and talked about the life and times of our departed Gen Mujuru, he represented what we should be, a nation of one people.

From all corners of Zimbabwe, the people shared their grief on his passing into another world, but they did not forget what he stood for, that all people must never again be under bondage from within or outside.

What are the impediments to the total emancipation of the people of this country? Is it the politics that are poisoned by the politicians? The problem, as I see it, is that the people of this country expect wonders from our politicians. They are human like everybody else.

Their role must be understood that they may have ideas but not all the answers. A lot has been written about members of parliament, that they should develop the areas they represent.

This may be wishful thinking. The role of an MP was defined a longtime ago when the then House of Commons was born in the 12th century in Britain.

At that time the people revolted against the autocratic king to claim the right of people to determine how their taxes were to be spent or distributed. This still stands today. Our MPs are there to see that our taxes and other resources are spent in accordance to the wishes of the people.

The major problem is that, if we had sustained economic development, then there could be more money that MPs can allocate to all areas they represent. But there is very little creation of wealth from the economy. There may be very little development in some areas due to lack of revenue creation not necessarily revenue allocation.

Economic freedom for which the liberation struggle was all about can only be achieved by increased production of goods and services.

The anomaly is that, with all the effort of developing skills through education, our engineers and technicians continue to leave the country. They are the backbone of any economic development. How then are we going to achieve sustained economic development and growth?

It is a major question that the nation has to confront. We need our highly skilled young people back. They come from across the social fabric of our society. Children of top politicians, farmers, civil servants, workers, peasants etc, have left the country in search of a better life. Surely, this is not the legacy of our liberation struggle for our children to find economic refuge elsewhere.

We are struggling to keep out immigrants to our country and yet our children are economic immigrants to other countries. It is now imperative to create an enabling environment through this new constitution for our children to come back home to put their skills to the development of their country.

Lest we forget, our legacy of the liberation struggle is our heritage that we should guard jealously.

The present and the future are our challenge.

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