Our Heroes, Our Legacy

By Ron Muvevererwi – Every nation on earth has emerged from conflict, war, oppression or a past legacy of injustice against its people or exploitation of its resources at one point in time. The historical unfolding of developments and effort to undo injustice in quest for freedom inevitably has given birth to the discourse of national historical ethos. At the heart of every country’s rare achievements are the drivers or champions who chose to step out of the comfort zone, deny themselves for a cause whose reward was insurmountable at a personal level. The quest for peace and equality among the human family is one of the finest achievements to inspire recognition.

Thirty years after over powering the oppressive colonialist regime of the British rule under Ian Smith, Zimbabweans from all walks of life honor the legacy of the liberation war heroes and heroines who rose against the tide, exchanged sweat and blood to lay a foundation upon

which Zimbabwe was birth. A scrutiny at those who sacrificed their lives reveals that above all they were united and driven by the cross cutting desire to see Zimbabweans freed from oppression.

We are all indebted to the gallant sons and daughters through their sacrificial blood, sweat who chartered the struggle for attainment of self rule, equal distribution of resources land being the prime heritage, realization of human rights and people’s freedoms.

As a nation we should find a common place of unity in the priceless achievement that was scored by the patriotic liberation legends particularly during this troubled time of transition under the coalition government. It is regrettable that the three principles in the GPA have failed to establish a common place that outweighs their difference to cement a strong practical tangible doctrine of unity. We have two paradoxical camps in two extremes. Sadly because of the hostility between the two Zimbabweans are divided along partisan lines. The  mistrust, tension and hostility existing between the MDC and ZANU Pf is a life time bomb that can ignite every time a cigarette is lit. The worst highlight was that of 2008 in which the blood elections turned a green eyed monster scoffing the meat it feeds on.

Sweat and blood of the gallant sons which brought about freedom from discrimination and inequality is now being swayed in vain as was feared by Dr Edison Zvobgo-‘We need to constantly check if we are still heading north as our compass had always instructed, if we check our compass and it indicates that we are now heading south, we would have betrayed the blood and souls split during the war. The blood of the sons and daughters would have spilt in vain.’’ Instead of furthering the work of the liberation struggle two camps have emerged. One purposes ignorance of the historical past and the other realizing the blunder of the latter purposes to guard the historical achievements. Proverbially two generations at war with each other instead of working together.

The sad truth of our generation apathy is that some individuals and their political parties, out of lack of understanding historical national discourse, have not only voluntarily been relegated from ownership of the liberation struggle but have been given the identity of the former oppressors. This acceptance of grandiose propagandist lie has given leverage for the perpetuation of a generational lie that has distorted the significance of our liberation war legacy. Alas heinous crimes against humanity have been carried out in the name of defending war gains and defending the cliché of sovereignty.

Sadly in the guise of guarding the gains of the hard won liberation struggle, what was achieved has been fiercely reversed to unimaginable proportions worse by those who even claim to have done more than others. Freedom of expression, assembly and association has been withdrawn at the behest of protecting the strangle hold of power for one regime. The right to chose leaders of choice has been hugely contested and rendered insurmountable in the face of growing violence, intimidation and political persecution.

Cognizant of the rights that become accessible after the war of liberation, it is regrettable that a case of new wine in old bottles has become the prevailing case of the day. The justification making rounds for the persecution of people of the same nationality whether true or false do not warrant the violation of rights of innocent man, women and children who get caught up in the jinx of great power politics. Politics or no politics, human rights are universal, inalienable and non conditional.

ROHR Zimbabwe joins the entire nation in celebrating the legacy of our liberation war heroes. We acknowledge that our endeavors in campaigning for people’s real freedoms and a culture of human rights would not be possible without the sacrifice of those who were at the forefront to overpower the colonial regime. We continue to draw inspiration from the dedication, patriotrism, consistence, selfless commitment, unyielding belief and clarity of purpose that defined the status of our long gone heroes and heroines of the liberation struggle.

The post independence generation has a role to play in not only preserving the gains but also in continuing with the noble fight of seeing Zimbabweans set free from oppressive systems of governance. Our heroes and heroines fought for generational sovereignty, the universal individual right for the Zimbabwean child to vote without persecution. As in the vision and drive of the late icon general Josiah Magama Tongogara, “Our demand is just and legitimate. We demand a free and fair election where international observers will oversee.”  (1978).

Understanding that the fight for a democratic society is a long protracted struggle, we encourage Zimbabweans from all works of life to honor the new generation heroes. Some have paid the debt of fighting s good fight with their lives and others continue to be birth as they achieve extraordinary feats for our beloved country Zimbabwe.