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2018 elections, implications on Ndebele

09 Jul 2018 at 12:09hrs | Views
Parliamentary representation has not helped Ndebele speaking territories much since attainment of independence. For a good hopeless 25 years or more Zanu PF MPs and ministers playing the tune of that party have pranced the scenes in the guise of representing the Ndebele. They have instead been following so-called gwara (whatever it is). A short period has seen MDC MPs who unfortunately have not given much thought to Ndebele issues and hopes.

MDC councillors took over local territories and in the case of Bulawayo, messed it up and reversed the gains of its progress by 50 years, failing in the process to respect the simple history of the city by among other blunders, taking over King Lobhengula kaMzilikazi Khumalo's kraals and parceling them out to Shona people to build filling stations! MDC administrative personnel proved worse than Zanu PF ones. All MPs from political parties have watched in glee over the years Zanu PF tirelessly colonizing Ndebele territories and severely impoverishing the Ndebele by routinely eliminating them from all contests on the economic front. All MPs have been noticeable by their complete silence. Humiliation and disrespect of Ndebele occurs all around them every day, as if they care!  
    
They have been silent to speak about a people on whom genocide was unleashed. They have not mentioned jailing or punishing of perpetrators who are so well known to them. Wishing perpetrators dead will not wipe away the genocide. Modern societies have created courts to deal with such crimes, but in this country courts are the preserve of Zanu PF.  
    
Matabeleland and parts of the Midlands have been unique since independence. MPs could have gained immensely from that uniqueness by carving out a novel and vital position for the region vis a vis Zimbabwean politics. Ndebele are not looking for a new Zimbabwe; they never did and are unlikely to do so. The Ndebele are looking for a resolution of the Ndebele question and MPs have either played mute, or have been selfish, or ignorant, or suppressed by political parties they work for. Party politics have taken centre stage while Ndebele representation has remained somewhere in the periphery and in that distant background. Instead genocide, marginalization, impoverishment, denial of opportunities in scholarships and business advancement, denial of development initiatives and economic growth through purposeful strangulation and alienation with soldiers and the police occupying so much of Ndebele territories, routinely killing and milking citizenry of money instead of protecting and aiding advancement. Ndebele have been driven out of national borders, made to feel second class and that they do not belong but are outsiders who would feel better in the Diaspora.

They have been ruled by fear dreading to come out of the closet and fight for their rights, (economic disempowerment, cultural subjugation, and political oppression – the tools for Ndebele crushing). The Ndebele have been a fearful lot with MPs more fearful towing party lines and forgetting their constituencies. Indeed MPs have reduced themselves to bickering babies keen on allowances, per diems etc. Vice presidents from Matabeleland have done no better. Neither have party chairmen and secretaries who have seen it right to stick to that agenda on paper and no other business at all! The Ndebele question is business that they cannot afford to handle. Is the chance gone for them to put the Ndebele question into focus in Parliament?  
    
Presently all manner of political formations are striving for new relevance and inclusion in the 2018 elections. They will win. They will get the Ndebele vote or the vote of so many Shona that have been strategically settled all over Ndebele territories. After winning they will not represent the Ndebele.  

Yet 2018 could become a turning point. For a region still trying to recover from genocide, Operation Murambatsvina, Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle, 2018 could be a defining year where Ndebele territories would be won back and used as a fulcrum to spring into a new era that would guarantee safeguards for future generations.  

Shona will not protect the Ndebele. They still pine to crush the Ndebele. Shona are genocidal minded. It is morally and ethically unjustifiable for genocidal individuals to want to continue to rule over a people they wanted to wipe off the face of the earth. It is equally difficult to understand that the same Ndebele would want to continue being ruled by people who wish them ill.  

Is it limited autonomy in devolution, is it self-determination, is it a 2-State solution, is it cessation and is it the mild thing – reparations/compensation that 2018 should represent in parliament? Cessation, separatist moves, independence, statehood and nationhood, whatever – the bottom line is that new thinking is now due: Okungapheliyo kuyahlola! An MP in Ndebele territories should be a complex and unique person; following rules, regulations, statutes, mission statement, vision, values and gwara of a party, but at the same time representing the Ndebele. Ndebele are a more special people and made even more special by Zanu PF and its Gukurahundist nefarious activities of 1981 to 1987 and beyond. Genocide might not have been punished to date, but all genocides all over the world have been revenged.
 
Chiefs and religious leaders have since November 2017 been holding secret meetings with Mnangagwa insisting that they can deal quietly with Gukurahundi and ensure there would be no revenge. Let them be reminded that revenge occurs in its own time. Rwanda is a case in point. 1983-1984 was revenge by the Hutu on the Tutsi for a far earlier routing unleashed on them with or without French assistance from as way back as 1685, 1880, 1894, and early 1900. Everybody knows how the Tutsi light skin endeared them with the French and led to partisan training and development with the Hutu marginalized as the darker, less educated and lowly cultured lot. Yet the revenge genocide was in 1993. Little is said about Tutsi hit back in 1994 which killed more than a million Hutu. Sometime in the future Hutu will come up with another genocide – history has this rude tendency of repeating itself. And did someone in Zanu PF say they were revenging genocide by Lobhengula or was it that arrogance which goes along with ruling parties in Africa?  

By the way, slavery was avenged more than a hundred years after it had been abolished in the U.S.A. when black mules introduced drugs and diseases into target white populations. Today drugs might be getting into America from different enemies with varied agendas but America still reels from a big junky problem. Never mind that blacks have been caught in their machinations numbing the American society. Chiefs, abefundisi, sellouts and such renegades cannot reverse history but would only delay the inevitable. What we could have wanted them to do was to help solve the Ndebele question and create a better tomorrow.

The guilty should be punished. A genocidal mind is a sick mind. That mind keeps telling us that Gukurahundi figures are an exaggeration; yes they are litotes, too small, because a modern army keeps figures of all killed, actual and in cross fire, as well as estimated numbers from associated deaths likely to occur as a result of the killing initiative – (sympathetic deaths?). 5 Brigade kept figures. Everyone knows that. They have accurate records of killings and 20 000 has been comfortable for them as released by the CCJP since it draws less attention to the calamitous elimination of the Ndebele. Shona secretly laugh at that figure because they know the right one!      
Now Ndebele region MPs are powerless to talk sense or to insist on common sense and squarely address the Ndebele question. Now would be the time for them to get educated and to get into parliament with a mandate from the Ndebele. They should think outside the box and have a new mindset that would win back Ndebele territories, establish new condition, reorganize self toward a system that would guarantee safe survival of  the Ndebele and punishment of all who unleashed genocide on them. And that cannot be achieved by sticking to political party slogans – especially political parties led by the Shona.  

The Ndebele themselves might need to be alerted to a few statements that reflect the nak*d and painful truth:
 
  • A genocidal mind disrupts social cohesion and political stability.
  • A genocidal mind cannot give life but death.
  • When Zanu PF committed genocide on the Ndebele, they were not carrying a picnic basket.
  • Zanu PF did not wave a white cloth wading into Ndebele people and sniffing life out of them.
  • Genocide fills people with dread, apprehension and self-doubt, but soon gives way to feelings of revenge.
  • Would it be OK to let perpetrators of genocide go scot free in Zimbabwe?
  • Could genocide on the Ndebele be an exception when all genocides all around the world have been and are being revenged?

We know what Ndebele MPs should argue for after the 2018 elections. Is any single MP willing to listen to us or will they ignore us and fear their parties as they have done in the past 30 years? Would they secure a good future for their children or would they assist the continued pulverization of their own people? Are they not aware the Ndebele have been pushed to the limit and feel the only safe way out rather than spilling of blood is to look for and establish free territory? Watch and use this space.


Source - Sazi Ntozonke
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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