Let’s emulate Wicknell Chivayo Wicknell Chivayo

Dr Matthew Mare Own Correspondent

The issue of ploughing back and empowering of the music and art industry in Zimbabwe has always been a missing link. 

The New Dispensation has a new trajectory to the music and art industry, a development that had seen Soul Jah Love being accorded the provincial hero status and Dr Oliver Mutukudzi declared a national hero. 

In the past, the music and art industry was being looked down upon. 

In fact, parents would not want their children to touch a guitar because it was being associated with a stigma of backwardness and urombe in local lingua. 

It was around 2000 when the Government through the Ministry of Information, Media and Broadcasting Services came up with a local content policy to protect and promote local musicians from external hegemony by international musicians. 

Despite these efforts, piracy continued to erode their earnings and it affected them grossly and the only option left was through live shows and digital marketing through YouTube and other various media platforms. 

This is a good starting point towards appreciating the other unsung heroes who are the key, but most neglected stakeholders. 

The appreciation as alluded can be at individual, corporate and at bureaucratic level. 

Wicknell Chivayo is playing a key role at individual level by empowering the music and art industry. 

The gesture created a mixed reaction in Zimbabwe, hence this article set the record straight that, as a nation we must come together and thank him for at micro and personal level he is being seen supporting the historically neglected sector. 

Even during the liberation struggle, music played a key role in mobilisation, boosting moral and education of the masses and combatants. 

Music and art are powerful tools in relaying messages and in influencing behaviour change. 

Chivayo is one of the few business persons in Zimbabwe to practically look into the welfare and the status of the musicians and artists.

 However, there is no giving without a criteria and Chivayo decided to choose some artistes and comedians for the gifts.

In the history of Zimbabwe there are a plethora of business man who were created and empowered by others, including the Government and the ruling Zanu PF party and they disappeared into thin air. 

There are a lot of beneficiaries of Presidential scholarship schemes and very few came back and paid fees for the next person. 

When one is empowered he or she must be able to influence and empower also the next person. 

That is what Chivayo is doing and he has clearly stated that it is through Zanu PF policies that he is empowered and he felt it prudent to plough back through thanking all musicians and artists.

Chivayo also appreciated members of the Apostolic Church with cars and some people made fun of him. 

What people failed to understand is the role the African independent churches played in the liberation of this country. 

The church played a role in conflict management and transformation through peace education and preaching nationalism. 

The church helps in conflict prevention and is important in that way. 

Some members of the African independent churches in Zimbabwe were detainees of the liberation struggle and hence share values with Zanu PF. 

Chivayo introduced a unique culture of lateral empowerment. 

The unique part of Chivayo support is that his targeted audience are people in the music industry to whom he is not expecting anything in return. 

A lot help conditionally, hence they help the elites in exchange of favours. 

Chivayo’s approach is philanthropic in nature and selfless giving. 

A number of those who criticised him, are people who still view musicians as people who must be looked down upon and are undeserving of a decent life. 

Musicians are humans too they have status and families to feed. 

They are equally affected by the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. 

Black empowerment is a theme that was started as early as the 90s and was being spearheaded by the Affirmative Action Group (AAG). 

The concept created powerful business persons and entrepreneurs like Gideon Gono, Strive Masiiwa, Peter Pamire, Rodger Boka, James Makamba and Philip Chiyangwa, among others. 

If a black person accrues money, some are quick to say they use black magic or is corrupt. 

As a nation and people we need mentality deliverance and retooling of our mental faculties. 

The myopic mind-set makes use tied to dependence syndrome and FDI mentality because we do not want to believe in ourselves as black person that we can make money and we that we can also help those in need as a gesture. 

We have never questioned food handouts we receive from Western foreign donors because we still think in circles that only the white man gives and we are perpetual receivers. 

Just because Chivayo is black, there is an outcry and is mocked for saying in 10 years he can be billionaire. These are structural deficits of failure to believe in ourselves. 

Should the black people fear to make money because they will have to explain themselves? 

As a country we need more givers to the vulnerable and the deserving. 

This season we are facing drought we need more givers; people who think of empowering and emancipation of the next person. 

‘Nyika ichivakwa nevene vayo’ meaning a country is being built by its own people. 

We need more empowered locals so as to be in control of the economic affairs of our country. 

The issue of believing that an investor has to be an outsider must stop and there is a need to have more empowered black persons with a heart to plough back and empower the next person. 

President Mnangagwa comes from the school of thought of nationalists who believe in black economic empowerment Strive Masiiwa tried his level best when he started the Capenum Trust to help the vulnerable and disadvantaged talented students to realise their dreams. 

To date we have thousands of medical doctors and engineers who were a product of the Capenum Trust. 

I urge all the beneficiaries to extent the same gesture to the next person and Zimbabwe we will be a great nation. 

What Chivayo is doing is not unique and what might only differ from what is happening is the capacity to give and the targeted audience. 

Please, Sir Wicknell keep up supporting especially our musicians. 

Let us not forget Cde Chinx’s family for his contribution to the nation was surmountable. 

Meanwhile, we want to thank the New Dispensation for continued recognition of the music and art industry in Zimbabwe. 

Poets like Memory Chirere and Albert Nyathi need to be recognised too so that there is comprehensive recognition of the art and the music industry in Zimbabwe.

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