Republic of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe speaking at the national independence ceremony on April 18, 2012. The country gained freedom from Britain in 1980., a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Let’s safeguard our independence
Thursday, 19 April 2012 00:00
As we celebrate our 32nd Independence anniversary, it is important that we sit down and introspect on ways to safeguard this hard-earned dispensation in view of relentless efforts by our adversaries to once again snatch it back from our hands.
In doing so, we need to look at independence from a holistic point of view. We have to look at it from a political, social and economic point of view. Our experiences for the past 32 years have taught us the need for wholesome independence hinged on political, social, economic and ideological freedom.
The task before us is to jealously safeguard our hard-earned independence and, at the same time, secure ownership of our abundant natural resources from the reach of the ever-fumbling greedy hands of the resource-hungry imperialists.
It is not simply enough to secure ownership of these resources without fully exploiting them for our benefit. Full exploitation does not entail reposing the responsibility to extract the resources to foreigner investors. It means completely owning the whole production chain from extraction to value addition.
It means exporting quality final products to the international community than to trade in unrefined commodities. It means harnessing the full value of our resources and creating maximum investment and employment opportunities for our people. Such an economic set-up will definitely catapult our nation to its economic independence.
Furthermore, safeguarding our independence entails providing adequate food supplies to our people. Hostile foreign forces have frenetically taken advantage of perennial food shortages in our country to surreptitiously meddle in our internal affairs and thus seek to dictate who should govern us.
Evidently, food shortages have become the Achilles’ heel used by foreigners to impose food aid as a flagrant tool to subvert our governments and turn people against our leaders. Food aid poses an untenable threat to our independence. In view of these unpalatable threats, it is incumbent upon us that we introduce strategic interventions to tame climate change and recurrent droughts so as to boost our food production mechanisms.
Among other interventions, Government should craft and develop viable irrigation facilities in all provinces to ensure that our people farm all year round. Fortunately our country has been favoured with good water reserves and fertile soils that would act as the backbone of such irrigation facilities.
To broaden chances of the irrigation facilities’ success, Government should also provide farmers with subsidised agricultural inputs and avail relevant support and training to both the commercial and communal farmers. Once we achieve food security, we would have hedged our independence from the subversive machinations of food aid providers from the West.
To further buttress our independence, it must not evade our minds that though we are independent, we are still at war with our former colonisers who unremittingly seek to reverse the gains of our liberation. Our former colonial enemies have recast themselves into a plethora of enticing institutions meant to cajole and hoodwink our people into voluntarily surrendering their sovereignty.
Just as they have decades ago infiltrated our societies through missionaries, hunters, traders and some local proxies, today we face the multifaceted imperial juggernaut at many fronts, with some of them too subtle to be recognised. We should vigilant of Western-pliant local political parties, civic organisations, NGOs, developmental institutions like the World Bank and the IMF, human rights activists, academics, the media and other proxies who have treacherously enlisted their services for the success of the imperial mission.
Interestingly, like their cunning predecessors who came under the guise of spreading Christianity and civilisation, these latter-day neo-imperialist proxies are on a crusade to spread the elusive imperial tenets of democracy, human rights, rule of law and other idealistic niceties. It is therefore instructive to all Zimbabweans that the regime change crusade is not mere propaganda from Zanu-PF but a reality that threatens our independence.
As we will naturally bequeath this independence to our children, there is an urgent need also to inculcate into them the importance of protecting our territorial integrity and sovereignty. Our detractors are frenetically trying to influence our children through their evident media omnipotence and omnipresence. Through their media platforms, westerners have sought to portray all Pan-African forces as undemocratic and out of sync with the existing global developments.
It is therefore only wise for our Government to deliberately incorporate Pan-African components into our school curricula. Our children should be taught our history from a Pan-African standpoint. They should be taught to identify and associate with our national aspirations and efforts to safeguard our independence.
Our independence was born out of unparalleled human sacrifice and should therefore be defended at all cost. We cannot allow our former colonisers to wrench it back.
Let us keep the revolutionary spirit alive.
Enjoy your eternal independence, Zimbabwe.
Long live the nation of Zimbabwe.
Tendai Moyo is a researcher and social commentator.