Just like Mugabe “Harare is on top of things”

Posted: October 12, 2011 in Uncategorized

Like the Archbishop of Canterbury, I was in Harare for a week during my holidays. Unlike him, my trip was not official business and thus didn’t get publicity. But again, like the Archbishop’s observation that Mugabe is on top of things, it was the city of Harare that I found to be on top of things.  Or so it seemed. The hotels were buzzing and so were the streets of the city. Not that I expected the city to be in ruins, the activity took me by surprise with some places I visited looking well-polished and clean. These include a place like

Joina City

KwaMambo, Zimcafe, Flava Joina City and others.  In the city centre, you cannot avoid noticing the smart Zimbabwean ladies and gentlemen going about with their business which seemed known only to themselves. And there went my conclusion, Harare is alert and on top of things.

….done with sleeping, open your eyes!

I then noticed something very strange as I drove towards Mereki for braai. Suddenly, Harare becomes a different place, one that is struck by social poverty with several open sewers and burst pipes characterising the daily environment of ordinary people.  I saw the hungry and sad faces of people who sell airtime and sweets at traffic lights. They beg in numbers leaving one near to tears especially if you had spent the whole day wandering around the Central Business District. I visited an orphanage just outside Harare and felt the pain and anger that questioned my conscious as a human being, feeling I am not doing enough to help the needy.  Children suffering from HIV/AIDS live in dire poverty, while very little is done by the government to allow aid to filter through to these poor souls.

Other people's business premises - The people

– and thus I was taken aback.

After visiting the orphanage, I went back to the CBD and things started to look different.  I noticed that all the glitz I had seen was staged, hiding real misery  behind. The false looks are meant to deceive people with no knowledge of the city. Later that night, a friend of mine explained everything to me, opening my eyes back to the real world. He told me that the activity that I had seen and believed to be that of a functioning society, was all based on false impressions, whereas crooks and criminals had taken over things. He told me examples of daily power cuts and endless stories of people who struggle to make ends meet. Many places are now closed in the city and these include the once popular Quality International Hotel. Wow, this was a shock. I guess even the Archbishop of Canterbury was shocked to realise later that, according to Grace Mugabe, Robert Mugabe is not alert the much of the times. He simply prepares and rests a long time before meeting people who can help him with some good PR exercises when they appear together in the media. This is the same with Harare, which can mislead a visitor to think that all is well.

..And what the hell are they doing to the City of Kings?

Unlike Harare, Bulawayo is pretty simple and one can actually tell that things are not well. The hotels are only buzzing with the notorious Zanu PF youth who get paid for invading buildings all over the city. At times, you can even see the new elite of the city in the form of some civic society and political party members mingling around in Hotels and bars. You then have to sit down and listen to the stories of people telling you about how they have become jobless after their companies got closed or relocated to Harare.

Is the government mad or they think we are mad?

Other people's to be business premises - Minister Obert Mpofu

While appreciating the Committee “Let Bulawayo Survive” chaired by professor Welshman Ncube, I am very suspicious about the composition of its members. Members of this committee are Tendai Biti, Pauline Mpariwa, Joseph Made, Tapiwa Mashakada and Saviour Kasukuwere. Not to sound tribalistic, other than professor Ncube, do any of these people have vast knowledge about the area they are trying to help? It could have been logical to involve at least a few other Ministers from the distressed region, seeing there are some who might be relevant in their functions to bodies like the State Parastatals and Enterprises. Maybe I see things I am not supposed to see but I also want to know the reasoning behind the choices made by government.

As Winston Churchill once said “…men stumble over the truth from time to time, but most pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing happened”. Get to Harare and see for yourself.

  1. Giyani Dube says:

    so sad reading your moving piece, what upsets me and concern me most is the relocating of companies from Kwantuthu ziyathunqa living our parents, brothers and sisters unemployed. As a community and a people we have a role in protecting our industry and the needy, it pains me most to hear about innocent souls being left un-attended to due to self centred politicians. I hope and do believe that all of us who follow these postings will be able to do something one day. It doesn’t mater how big or small your contribution might be for as long as it reaches that innocent soul. It’s an eye opener to all of us; let’s act against these evil men made deeds.

  2. Mathula says:

    I agree with you Giyani. Its sad indeed. The other problem is that we have all left and now the Zanu PF youth are just doing as they please,,disturbing investment opportunities and threatening our parents. I saw it at Rainbow hotel bafo in byo. You would feel like a stranger in your hometwon I tell you brother..we better get our act together!

  3. Rejoice Ngwenya says:

    I didn’t hear you talk about the latest vice – The Manchurian Invasion! What you’re going to see when next you visit Harare is …. Chinatown, possibly along Robson Manyika ave off Orr Street!

  4. Mathula says:

    Ahaaah, I gues I will have to touch on that in the next articles,,i was taken by surprise about that. I took the bus on my was to Harare and there were quite a few men from that region,,seemingly relaxed and I thought, wow..its happening…Chinatown seems to be the way the city will go…!

  5. Den Moyo says:

    The situation back home is pathetic. It is high time the Zimbabwe Diaspora rises up and demand its unalienable right to vote in the next elections. For so long we have kept quite and hoped that sanity would prevail and our country would be restored, but that has been a fallacy.

    The present government does not have the people’s interest at heart. They are only concerned about lining their pockets. You should see the mansions they are building in Harare, and all the businesses they have created for themselves. The Indigenization Act is the final looting exercise for these kamikazee kleptocrats. We need to do everything in our power to ensure that we reclaim our country from these thugs.

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