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Opinion / Columnist

Promoting leadership of the next generation

13 Feb 2017 at 10:56hrs | Views
If Zimbabwe is able to ride it's ship with the new leadership devoid of corruption and commits itself to managing the country with justice and integrity, I am convinced that God will intervene on the nation's behalf. It will take the efforts of hundreds of NGOs working side by side with local Zimbabweans to turn things around. If the Zimbabwean government can stabilise itself and give assurance to outside investors that what they invest will go to and stay with the people, Iam convinced that resources would flow back into the country. I also believe that millions of Zimbabweans dispersed across the globe would return to help rebuild their homeland. These diaspora Zimbabweans, while in the West, have been learning new skill sets and gaining understanding on how democracy and the free market system work. They have also stayed engaged with events back home and sent funds back not only to help support their families but their friends and neighbours. Zimbabweans think communally. To raise the next generation of leaders for Zimbabwe, there are foundational factors that we need to look at closely :

ECONOMY

The unstable economic environment these days Have led to the proliferation of the informal sector and black market which has absorbed most young people as agents and dealers. Liquidity problems have culminated in the shutting down of most companies and people are relocating to the Capital City in a bid to find employment but there is none. Indegenisation is being touted as the vehicle that will spawn a change of fortunes against deepening unemployment but there is no one benefiting from it. It's because of bad policies by Zanu Pf that have seen many investors shun Zimbabwe. We are losing out on the much needed Foreign Direct Investment.

LAND

The land distribution policies for the last 20 years have been disastrous. The land was first taken out of greed and then taken again out of anger and resentment. In the midst of this ownership tug of war, it has ultimately been torn apart and destroyed. It now lies dying and it cant feed the people and everyone has lost. Those that knew how to work the land were driven off, those that didn't are letting it die a slow death. The result has been the utter collapse of the Agricultural sector across the whole country. While I do understand where anger Comes from, and in many cases it's Justified, but solving a problem by more angry injust acts is simply a recipe for more disaster. No one wins and everyone loses. While the Mugabe government continues to insist that the country doesn't need help from the WEST, I suspect that is more about the fear of losing power than what is best for the people. Zimbabwe desperately need an influx of people with Macro and micro agricultural skills. Their skin colour should be irrelevant. What is in their hearts is critical. God entrusted the land to the people of Zimbabwe, whoever they may be, it is their responsibility to cause it to flourish. Mankind's accountability hasn't changed since the days of the Garden of Eden. If the Zimbabwean government would establish a rule of law, whereby men could be assured that justice, fairness and equality would always prevail, many would come to help rebuild the country. The primary focus should be Restoring the commercially viable farms to productivity so the nation can feed itself.

While this is taking place, Zimbabweans need to be trained on farm management, so that one day they can manage their own farms. As skilled Zimbabwean farmers emerge, they need to be allowed and enabled to purchase farmlands of their own and also to manage adjacent or near these large farms. The produce from these smaller farms could then be sold to a community co-op which in turn would sell to the larger concerns. Zimbabwe needs to return to its community roots, roll up sleeves and work as a community. There are white farmers in the country that cared about the plight of the Zimbabwean black farmer and wanted to help them but were driven away by the government in anger. For the sake of our children, we need to get past the past and move forward under a renewed sense of the fact that we are a community made of variety of people. We are one nation under God.

AGRICULTURE

I know there are many people in Zimbabwe that want to see the nation prosper, become more industrialised and I think some day, that can happen. The problem is that we have to start with what we have. At the moment the nation cannot feed itself because of the Zanu Pf Fast Track Land Reform Programme that went bad. One of the issues that has plagued Zimbabwe over the years has been refusal of its leadership to think long term. When one is driven by greed and self ambition, all one thinks is, What do I get out of this? This ravenous beast has destroyed Zimbabwe and we are going to have to come together out of the ruins and rebuild from the ground up. Agriculture is the foundation stone that all else will lie upon. Zimbabwe's next generation of leaders must change their nomadic tribal mindset from living for today and carving out a personal kingdom to building a future for their children tomorrow in the form of a prosperous nation. This will take hard work and personal sacrifice but like those that have gone before, the children will not let your name be forgotten. You will become the true fathers of Zimbabwe.

EDUCATION

We must invest in Schools and teachers. Every community needs to have a strong school that is focused on raising a new generation of children that looks forward to what lies ahead and is not enslaved to the angry attitudes of the past. If children are taught to look for opportunities they will find them. If Zimbabwe is to prosper, and get free from the chains of corruption, the children need to be trained in the ways of the Kingdom of God. Jesus need to be their role model NOT Robert Mugabe. The values, morals and ethics they need to learn will be the foundation stones on which their communities will be built and prosper. Without these values instilled, Zimbabwe's next leaders will carry on the corrupt practices of their predecessors and all Zimbabweans will continue to suffer under the slavery of poverty for generations to come. Remember David,Solomon and Moses built governments on principles of justice. When righteousness reigns, nations prosper.

Many Zimbabweans go overseas to train in areas where there are no jobs. What is the sense of a degree in Rocket Science when your village doesn't have electricity and clean water. Our children must be trained in skills they can use to make a living in the current economic development stage of the country. In an Agrarian based economy, there are many support industries that can be developed to help sustain it. Zimbabwe needs engineers that can develop and manage its water resources. It needs teachers that understand that by sowing the right values into the children now, the whole country will reap a bountiful harvest later.

EMPLOYMENT

Our children are growing up in a country with over 80% unemployment. What is their incentive to want to learn? What is the point if it gets them nowhere? If properly educated in trade skills, even if there is not a position open in the existing companies, one can still make products that can be sold on the open market, directly to the consumer. In countries like India and China, their population continues to grow and they are finding it difficult to feed their people. There are business opportunities in the Agriculture sector for Zimbabweans to supply the burgeoning populations with food. There are huge opportunities ahead for Zimbabwe if she can think and plan properly. Zimbabwe's leadership need to change the mindset of its people from being victims to entrepreneurs. This starts with the leaders that have left behind the chief mentality and understand that leadership is really about the people, not the other way around. The more we can teach the new generation good leadership and entrepreneurship skills, together another Zimbabwe will be possible



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Source - Tendai Mazenge PDP secretary for policy Harare
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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