Today I got to understand why our heroes and heroines sacrificed their lives during the Liberation Struggle. For them enduring the horrors of the war and putting their lives on the line was for us to enjoy the fruits of independence and freedom. One may ask if we are indebted to these heroes and heroines, or if we need to repay them in any way. I will answer this question by saying that we all have a mandate to safeguard that which our heroes and heroines sacrificed their lives for.
I was listening and watching a video I came across on social media on colonialism. It was during a year old interview with Ambassador Machivenyika Mapuranga where he was explaining his reading of the Colonial Office Documents kept in the public record office in London. He exposed how Zimbabwe and South Africa along with Australia, New Zealand and Canada were referred to as white man country and how the phrase had constantly been used by the administrators, the likes of Lord Salisbury, Lord Milner, Sir Harry Johnston, in the publication.
Ambassador Mapuranga said the white man country policy depended on two pillars. The first one being that the British were supposed to outnumber the natives because these countries had been earmarked for permanent white settlement. This policy succeeded completely in Canada, Australia and New Zealand and was on its way to success in South Africa and Zimbabwe but they obviously failed as time went by, due to our heroes and heroines’ gallantry in resisting this racial genocide.
The details given by this gentleman shows just how much the white men was hoping to win over these two - South Africa and Zimbabwe just as they had won New Zealand, Australia and Canada, through purging the existence of Zimbabweans, but it was not to be.
The second pillar of the white man country policy had to do with land alienation. In all the five (5) countries, the natives were removed from their land and put in native area and in Zimbabwe they were called native reserves. He explains how the white settlers owned about 70% to 85% of the land with the native owning just 25% of the land.
This got me thinking and opened my eyes as to why the sons and daughters of Zimbabwe took to the barrel. It is not easy for someone to just come and displace you from your home let alone placing you in a place that is not arable and proceed to make you slaves in your own country. One is forced to fight for what is theirs and that is exactly what happened.
What the white man wanted was the good weather, the rich soil, our natural resources and our country. Of which they took our natural resources to develop their countries of origin.
The white man could have won in Australia, Canada and New Zealand but they were not going to win in “Southern Rhodesia”.Our heroes and heroines fought the white man to take back what was ours and that is our country, our land. Our liberation war heroes would not allow the white man to claim what was not theirs.
What still baffles me when the white man says David Livingstone discovered the Victoria Falls. Just because it was the first time for them to see the Falls it did not mean us in Southern Rhodesia had not seen them. For us Mosi-a-Tunya has always been there and because it had not been published and Zimbabweans had been living with it for centuries it did not mean they had not discovered it.
Men and women died for our freedom and they sacrificed a lot. They left their wives, children and parents. They left school just so they could go and fight the white settlers who did not obviously care about the natives.
I cannot imagine having to stay in my country Zimbabwe with the white man in power because those people do not mean well for us and they never did. All they were after was our land, our natural resources our country and I am sure they would not mind if all Zimbabweans were to be wiped off the face of the earth.
What pains me is when I see fellow Zimbabweans conniving with these former colonialists; the British and Americans. The white men dangle the green dollar in front of them and they are so gullible and get blinkered that they forget that Zimbabwe is ours and not the white men’s. They are willing to sacrifice the country for a few dollars. They have caused so many divisions in Zimbabwe divisions that some my fellow Zimbabweans do not see that they are being used to destroy peace, unity and harmony we have as a people. We cannot have the white men take over we cannot let the white men come to take us back to the reserves.
The only reason why Zimbabwe is under so many sanctions being placed on it is because Zimbabweans took back their land and will never allowed the white man to have a say on this country because it is ours. Real patriotic Zimbabweans will safeguard the gains of our liberation struggle and that is our freedom, independence, our land our natural resources and our country. We are Zimbabweans and no one can take that away from us.
Patriotism is all about love and devotion for one’s own country and that is exactly what the heroes and heroines of Zimbabwe had and still have because those who survived lived to tell the story and to defend the gains of independence.
It is in this month of August that we honour and remember them and their sacrifices. Respect must be given to our war veterans because they sacrificed a lot so Zimbabweans could enjoy the freedom they are enjoying today. Let us follow suit so the future generations can enjoy the fruits of our independence we also owe it to them.