The Revolution, Passive Endurance: The Africans Vs The Brutal Colonial System Of Land Dispossession
15 January 2014
By Reason Wafawarova
Zimbabweans have had enough of
We can no longer entertain those among us who wish to
give our people an anaesthetic that slumbers them into
perpetual suffering in the very short days of our
lifespan on this planet.
Our ultimate goal in this revolution is not to point
our people towards the direction of our enemies,
perceived or real, but to bring happiness on the faces
The year 2000 marked the beginning of the revolution
we christened the Third Chimurenga — in essence the
derided but victorious land reform programme that has
drastically transformed the agrarian regime in the
country, not least by way of a just ownership of the
There was a time when the collective inspiration
behind this revolution was the memory of those heroic
militants that prematurely left us as we fought in
that relentless liberation war of attrition — to
fulfil the aspiration of their war effort and for us
to rest in the comforting belief that at long last
their departed souls would rest in solemnity and
We must never forget that this revolution only took
place because of the dynamic power of the dispossessed
— the impoverished community created by the brutal
colonial system of land dispossession.
Our leaders, historians and intellectuals may as usual
contrive credit for themselves as always happens in
many revolutions across the world, but our eyes cannot
be taken away from the precarious conditions our
people continue to live in, even after the valorous
land reclamation that brought back our stolen land
from the colonially privileged white elites.
Our resettled indigenous farmers have had more
promises than delivery from the politicians, and sadly
the promising side has no issue forgetting their
Capitalisation of the farming process has been so
popular to preach particularly on the part of Zanu-PF
politicians, but season after season our resettled
farmers have gone unmechanised, and farming inputs
have remained a dream to many of our determined and
incredibly committed resettled farmers.
While there has been an impressive surge in tobacco
production, the country is still direly struggling to
meet its net consumption for maize meal, wheat and
other food crops.
The politicians find it easier to blame the Western
illegally-imposed economic sanctions for our poor
harvests than to accept their joint culpability in
failing to support our farmers.
After all, we have the Malawian agrarian miracle
performed by the British during the Mutharika era, and
no doubt our politicians find such aid-driven miracles
easier to believe in than the gospel of
If Zimbabwe does not immediately correct this
false-hearted patriotism where our elites only align
with the people through vainglorious political
utterances while their actions all point to selfish
prodigality we are going to deteriorate into a living
definition of outrageous poverty.
We cannot play heroism in a country where the majority
of our people do not live with the dignity they
deserve. That kind of hypocrisy is diabolical.
While our people have been discerning enough to reject
emphatically the kind of change preached by the
opposition MDC formations, what cannot be brushed
aside is that the ordinary people of Zimbabwe are
today a force that wants change — revolutionary
It is only the revolution we started in 2000 that can
overturn the old order, that can satisfy the people's
Our people's conscious commitment to the revolution is
unquestionable, but we cannot continue on this path of
betrayal where our politicians aim to reap votes out
of our commitment to the revolution, recklessly
abandoning their part in implementing policies that
would bring to fruition the aspiration of our people.
Some of our politicians must be living in a
make-believe world where all non-politicians are
assumed to be highly credulous, incontrovertibly
looking up to the word of the politician for all
solutions to life.
That mentality in our politicians has created the
primordial chef culture– a pernicious phenomenon
intoxicating our leaders into demi-gods that believe
only lesser mortals can sin, the non-liable lot that
takes criticism for crime.
We will be betraying our people if we in the media
allow ourselves to celebrate mediocrity in the name of
We are not doing the nation any favour by celebrating
the backward peasant that has been resettled on some
land formerly occupied by some long departed white
fellow — all to be left resigned to his fate, all the
time languishing in ferocious hope that stands no
chance of fulfilment from his own governors.
We want to be celebrating the birth of a new farmer
who is serious and aware of his responsibilities,
working for the future by arming himself with new
We are talking about the great actor and beneficiary
of our policy of building an independent national
economy through the two pillars of land reforms and
Our farmers must be elevated to synonyms of respect,
not this laughing stock where our detractors keep
reminding us of the glory farming days of colonial
We owe our new farmers the respect for proud and
worthy combatants who defend the just cause of
indigenous emancipation — combatants who adequately
shoulder their part in agrarian production.
But we have unflinching politicians who seem convinced
that the new farmer must be left to fight this battle
alone, and they believe input support is hierarchical
and must follow the protocols of Zanu-PF power
After seven years of writing in support of the
Zimbabwe's revolution relatives, friends and foes are
equally surprised that this writer does not own a
flourishing farm purely on the basis of political
We live in the culture and days of patronage politics.
The assumptions are not without basis. We have a
system of patronage politics that stinks to high
heavens, and that is why being connected politically
to the Zanu-PF leadership structures is considered
mandatory for anyone who still wishes to farm.
Today we must look at our land reform programme and
draw lessons and clarify the road to further success.
For this revolution to succeed, we need an entire
population that is truly convinced, not one that is
submissive and ready to passively endure its destiny.
But we have half-hearted leaders that cannot see
anything beyond wrestling for political power, people
that swiftly go to sleep at the mentioning of the word
policy, but are deadly alive when it comes to
eliminating political opponents at intra or inter
We are not going to build a successful Zimbabwe with
leaders that believe in submission to imperialism and
perpetual begging as a way of developing the country.
Neither can we ever build a successful Zimbabwe with
kleptomaniacs sitting in our Parliament and Cabinet.
In the absence of our defeated opponents of
yesteryear, the greatest adversity that stands in our
way today is the traitorous leader that aspires for
self-enrichment in the name of us all.
We are in a revolution where some of our most
strategic cadres enjoy treacherous islands of riches
surrounded by an ocean of poverty.
We hear our hard-working civil servants dream of
earning just US$6 480 a year and the dream may not
even come true. Yet some CEOs of public owned
companies are earning as much as US$40 000 per month,
and of course as our new farmer goes unabatedly
unfunded, season in season out.
Yes, Zanu-PF legitimately claims custodianship of our
revolution, but there are erroneous practices and
ideas that are harmful to the revolution easily found
within the power corridors.
Not only have we seen nefarious opportunism at work
within Zanu-PF politics, but we also have been made to
watch the rewarding of the same opportunism.
We have watched this revolution heading towards decay
as cadres in leadership desert the revolutionary
struggle and abandon an intransigent defence of the
people's interests as they embark on this frantic
search for personal and selfish advantage.
Opportunists within Zanu-PF are not guided by the
revolution or by its needs or dictates.
In any revolution unity is always considered a key
issue, but in Zimbabwe we must be wary of this
monolithic and sterile kind of unity that paralyses
progress as blind loyalty is elevated to appear like
Uniting around power-brokers pursuing power away from
the democratic mandate of the people is not the kind
of unity nations are built upon, and those in Zanu-PF
who have followers they call their own are doing
nothing short of destroying the party.
Without the happiness of our people our revolution is
a mockery to our national identity. We are not going
to feed this nation on mind stimulating speeches that
are divorced from the practical interest for the daily
lives of our people.
This writer sincerely hopes that Zim-Asset is not
another notorious flow chart from abstract schemas
that have no purpose in real life and is of no
interest to the masses.
We have had other policy documents.
The most notorious was Esap in 1992, and as history
has already recorded the policy was a monumental
disaster. We can easily remind ourselves of the
glorious rhetoric that ushered in Operation Garikai/Hhalani
Kuhle, or Baccossi and the simplistic conclusion we
arrive at is that implementation of flowery policies
is what our leadership notoriously lack.
The politics of velvety policy papers may be good and
impressive for a handful of dreamers, or for misguided
political fanatics in delusional seeking of
self-gratification, but in the land reform programme
we are looking for the opposite of these fantasies. We
are after transforming the country's agrarian regime.
We are after feeding the nation of Zimbabwe and even
feeding the entire region.
It is achieved by practical agricultural activities
spearheaded by ourselves and by our own skilled
Zimbabwe we are one and together
we will overcome. It is homeland or death!!
REASON WAFAWAROVA is a political writer based in