We need to move from the restrictive current existence and into the totality of possibilities. For that to happen, our political focus has to change. Instead of advancing a political project focussing on those elements that are barriers, a new politics focussing on scaling the obstacles should give birth now. We want objectivity not carelessness to be the pillar of our political future. Right from the word go, we denounce all forms of discrimination; we constructively deny it place.
A contemporary, safer and progressive Matabeleland cannot be built on fear but on the enthusiasm to change for the better; creating barriers against some communities and individuals for no reason other than being different is both morally bereft and politically retrogressive. We certainly will not make Matabeleland safer by building barriers between people, not even a wall of the proportion of Donald Trump’s dreams will ensure peace to Matabeleland nationals. Barriers increase ignorance, raise anxiety, suspicion, intolerance and resentment within and between communities that should otherwise be living peacefully side by side.
Perhaps the only justifiable barriers and ones that we should not be ashamed to erect will be those that protect us from a political tyranny that threatens to pull the rag of democracy, peace and transparency from underneath our feet. Otherwise the Matabeleland most of us desire is one in which the flow of ideas across society is promoted and not hindered by human crafted barriers. Let us forget not that the very barriers we erect for others also turn out to be the same obstacles that block our own world vision. An open society can only be achieved by creating a political system that transcends all barriers. We want a system that will exercise civility in dealing with the good, bad and the ugly within our socio-political environment.
Impatience, misdiagnosis of our problems and poorly thought out solutions will not bring peace in Matabeleland; it is the intelligent, organised gradual changes in opinion, the slow but constructive erosion of old barriers and the setting up of new structures that will bring effectual and eternal progress to our political systems. I have no fear in saying a progressive Matabeleland political space will be one that promotes equal access to opportunity for all the inhabitants of the territory irrespective of race or tribe.
When we stop making reference to discriminatory policies, when we forget attempts at the ill-advised restoration of ineffectual socio-political systems in the form of a monarchy, when we desist from calls of expulsion of certain ethnic groups from Matabeleland we will command respect from many in a world increasingly getting weary of violence. Matabeleland nationals’ peace is not dependent on the exclusion of any tribe from the region but on laws that would preserve people’s right to be themselves.
In conclusion, let us not focus on the things that are barriers but on ways of overcoming the apparent human designed obstacles to our progress. Loud and obnoxious noises do not solve problems, intelligent and coherent planning does. We need to focus on the development of holistic policies and projects that will build bridges over barriers if not getting the extant barriers out of the way and allow us the chance to unveil local talent/ creativity that will give our people the opportunity to extract themselves from the past right into a multitude of possibilities within our territory and into the wider world.