by MLF Mthwakazi
The gap between the Matebeleland’s independence restorationist campaign and the very urgent need to attend to people’s needs in Matabeleland should be bridged by whatever means necessary as a matter of urgency. Any form of disconnect between the emergent ideology of independence for Matebeleland and the need to attend to the people’s needs by the messengers of the ideology can prove dangerous and incapacitating for them. It is for this reason that Mao of China, while leading the revolution of that country urged his army to be like, ‘fish in the water’ for them to survive and be in a position to carry the revolution forward and maintain its momentum. The water was the Chinese peasants and the fish were Mao revolutionary army.
The soldiers had to build a rapport with the peasants and attend to their needs for the peasants to protect and defend the army and the revolution. As we all know the fish cannot survive without the water. A few days ago 16 whales died on the east coast of Scotland after wandering to the shallow waters of those coastal beaches of that country. Those that survived had to be refloated by the vets from the British Divers and Marine Life Rescue. The independence lobby has to ground and dove-tail its restorationist agenda by urgently striving to attend to the needs of the people in the region.
The advancement of the ideology of the need for independence for Matebeleland is fast gaining ground while urgent programmes to attend to the urgent needs of the people of Matebeleland are lacking from the messengers. There is an urgent need for this gap to be bridged by the independence lobby through serious programmes that will address the needs of the people so as to sustain the ideology and make it survive until the realization of the independence of Matebeleland. If the needs of the people are not addressed urgently by whatever means necessary and not ignoring the fact that the system from Harare will try and make all attempts to frustrate such interventionist ways, it remains no excuse for the lobby not to get dirty with coming up with programmes to address the needs of the common man on the ground. If such programmes are serious and the common man stands to benefit from them, then the common man will defend the restorationist ideology and propel it to dizzy heights until the realization of the state of Matebeleland.
Any failure to bridge this gap between the ideology to restore Matebeleland as a state and the need to attend to the urgent needs of the people of Matebeleland by whatever means necessary might mean that the ideology might stray into the coastal societal beaches of Matebeleland and find little chance to be refloated back to this great society. The ideology for Matebeleland’s independence needs to be married with the programmes of action to address the urgent needs of the people of the region.
The lobby has just got to be creative and clever about how to attend to the needs of the people by developing ways, means and capacity for resource mobilization for infrastructural and resource development in Matebeleland in the spheres of education and health to name but a few areas in dire need of attention. If this need to bridge the gap between the ideology of independence and the need to attend to the urgent needs of the people of Matebeleland is not done, then the Obert Mpofus of this world will continue to bridge the gap and in the process manage to mislead our people.
Zanu-PF and MDC-T have managed to create its rich foot soldiers and lackeys in the region who are ready to deploy the ill-gotten resources to divert and distract the attention of the people from the revolution that needed to take place yesterday in the region. It is in this regard that the space to address the needs of the common man in Matebeleland has to be fiercely contested against the agents of the system who have an incredible finance war-chest that is meant to be deployed to the people to keep them under siege.
The Zanu-PF system and of late the MDC-T system is now changing tact and equipping a few political lackeys with financial resources to deploy to the people to divert them from central issues of concern and from the much needed revolution that needs to take place in Matebeleland. The restorationist lobby needs to build up to challenge such a system by having formidable programmes to address the needs of our people. The Matebeleland youths are unemployed there and they will be ready to spearhead and lead serious programmes that address their needs and those of their families.
It is also important for the restorationist camp to ensure that the megaphone politics of the campaign for the restoration of Matebeleland is maintained while at the same time serious programmes of action to address the needs of the common man are attended to. Any deviation from such an approach will prove a counter-revolutionary strategy that will constantly stall the programme and get a lot of organizations championing this cause to be ‘parked’ somewhere in the political terrain of Matebeleland. The restorationist lobby needs to steel itself for a long protracted struggle of the emancipation of the people of Matebeleland and one of those struggles is indeed to attend to their urgent needs without fail.