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What does it profit Zimbabwe's ruling elite to gain the country but lose their souls?

23 Mar 2022 at 07:22hrs | Views
Yesterday (March 22, 2022) when I penned an article, "Did war veterans fight for a political party or the people of Zimbabwe?", I honestly did not know what response to expect - whether a positive feedback, or harsh backlash, especially from those directly referenced in the piece.

Being in a toxic country as Zimbabwe - where political polarization has tragically been a counter-productive and retrogressive facet of our lives for the better part of the past four decades, at the instigation of a ruling elite - whose survival, and claim to power, is largely premised on sowing seeds of divisiveness and hatred.

Whether we have been divided on tribal, racial, and even political lines - the results are always the same - Zimbabweans have constantly and continuously been incited to hate each other, ever since attaining independence from British rule in 1980.

Never had there been any genuine peace in this country - as we have either frowned upon each other based on our tribes (leading to the Gukurahundi genocide in the 1980s when those of Ndebele ethnicity were considered undesirables who had to be eliminated), and race (whereby, whites were generally regarded as British colonists, who had no place in Zimbabwe, nor the right to possess any land, resulting in the early 2000s violent and murderous land reform program).

Then, we witness the current hateful political dispensation (under which, any opposition supporters and voices of dissent are portrayed as dangerous "regime change agents", who have to the crushed and quashed as a matter of urgency, since the very survival of the country as we know it, is under threat).

As such, receiving positive feedback from veterans of the liberation struggle - who identified and connected with the sentiments I expressed yesterday - was much encouraging and inspiring for the future of our nation.

It is so refreshing witnessing more and more Zimbabweans - especially, those who sacrificed everything for all the people of this country to attain freedom and dignity in their motherland - seeing through the atrocious lies and deceit of those who are in power today, who clearly hijacked the liberation struggle for their own self-serving ambitions, which had absolutely nothing to do with the ordinary citizenry.

This morning, I was reading one of the messages sent to me - whereby the writer heart-wrenchingly lamented the disgusting and disgraceful manner in which his two uncles, who gave up everything for this country's independence and freedom, were cold-heartedly dumped and forgotten, never receiving any recognition, whilst wallowing in extreme poverty - yet, those who hijacked the struggle, and quite frankly contributed very little, now live in opulence and luxury, as if the only ones worthy of this "independence and freedom".

As we engaged in this discussion of indescribable pain and despondency, I could not help wondering whether our country's ruling elite had anything resembling a soul left inside them?

Surely, how can anyone sleep at night - knowing fully well that the vast majority of those they are supposed to lead are hungry, as can not afford the most basic of needs, with 74% of the population earning less than US$5.50 a day (average monthly wage being US$253), half of Zimbabweans below the food poverty line, and 3.5 million children living in chronic hunger - yet, those in power are always spoilt for choice, with a wide variety of scrumptious wholesome meals on the offering?

How do the ruling elite live with themselves - when, ordinary citizens are rotting and dying in most harrowing and unimaginable pain, as they can not access the urgently required medical attention, with special mention of cancer patients who are failing to receive radiotherapy treatment, due to perennially breaking down machines, which can not be fixed on account of a lack of qualified technicians in the country, and a miserly unwillingness to pay for the imported services?

Does it not bother our so-called leaders when a nation's entire generation is under threat of being uneducated - due to government's unpreparedness to invest meaningfully in the country's education system, in which our children are not receiving any learning, since their schools are poorly equiped, whilst their educators are at their lowest motivational ebb, as a result of pathetic remuneration?

Can those in power have any sound sleep (without taking any sleep-inducing medications) when those of their own age group, the elderly, are getting measly pensions that are not enough even if every cent were to be used just for food - but, knowing fully well that our mothers and fathers worked their sweat off for this country, and deserve a relatively comfortable retirement, where they can at least afford all their basic needs?

And, when we speak out and stand up, the Zimbabwe regime has no qualms at all unleashing a brutal reign of terror against their own citizens - under the guise of fighting "Western-sponsored regime change agents who are threatening the country's sovereignty, territorial integrity, and independence"!


So, if I cry out against the hunger and poverty I am enduring, whilst our leaders live lavishly on ill-gotten wealth derived from the grand looting of our national resources, which we should be sharing equitably - suddenly, that renders me a "Western-sponsored regime change agent"?

Does patriotism entail looking aside - whilst, those connected to the highest offices on the land are awarded dubious tenders, and unscrupulous favors to freely plunder billions from our country's purse?

Are we supposed to keep quiet, or maybe even celebrate, simply because those same pillagers are using a negligible and insultingly insignificant portion of that multi-billion dollar booty to sponsor local football teams, and rehabilitate soccer stadiums?

How do these people even look themselves in the mirror?

Do they have a heart left within them?

I ask those in power - what does it profit you to gain the whole country but lose your souls - as what you are doing is pure adulterated evil and wickedness?

Let us tell each other the truth - are you even truly enjoying all those riches, knowing fully well that you have robbed that poor elderly widow, have starved that helpless child, and are surrounded by a nation that hates you for all the pain and suffering you have caused them?

© Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, and social commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp/Call: +263715667700 / +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936 / +263733399640, or email:

Source - Tendai Ruben Mbofana
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