Dr Masimba Mavaza
Whenever I hear people talk negatively about this country, I assume they are out of their mind.
A number of Zimbabweans in the diaspora always say bad things about their country. It has become their preoccupation.
Every country has bad and good things and it is the responsibility of Zimbabweans in the diaspora to highlight the positives about their country.
Those in the Diaspora should market their country and educate people about Zimbabwe.
It is unfortunate that some of the Zimbabweans who are abroad still demonise their country.
It is important that people be patriotic and be able to defend their country rather than celebrating when people say bad things.
Being patriotic does not mean mindlessly praising everything your nation does, like some.
To me, patriotism is rooted in subordinating your own personal benefits in trying to do what is best for your nation. And the first step in even knowing what is best for your nation is an honest assessment of what is beneficial and what is harmful to it.
The next step, which proceeds naturally from the first for any real patriot, is to identify existing challenges affecting the country, pointing them out to responsible authorities and collectively coming up with solutions.
It is also the duty of a patriot to help leaders identify weakness and assist with solutions in the best interests of the people of Zimbabwe.
Constructive criticism is important as it promotes honest and help and provides specific suggestions for positive results.
The bottom line is that mindless sheep never fix problems; they only contribute to them.
Patriotism requires identifying, pointing out and acting openly and honestly.
But seeing nothing good in your country mostly means you might be not good for your nation.
It is a pity some Zimbabweans in the diaspora behave as if Zimbabwe is not their country.
They have taken a wrong belief that you can only be ‘cool’ if you talk bad about your country.
This mentality is destructive and totally disheartening.
When economic asylum seekers secure refuge in foreign countries, they feel obliged to thank their hosts by continuing their fake activism while demonising their ‘roots’.
They pretend to be serious activists and continue their asylum lies.
This includes spreading fake news and accusing their home countries of human rights abuses, among other things.
These fake Diaspora activists begin to advocate for ‘change’ in their country of origin.
Indeed, some Zimbabweans abroad behave as if they are possessed, by giving completely wrong facts about home.
For example, those who started the #ZimbabweanLivesMatter are abroad.
The #ZimbabweanLivesMatter engineers paint a gloomy picture about Zimbabwe making people believe the country is not peaceful.
One Zimbabwean in the UK (name withheld) told a judge in an asylum court that the Zimbabwean Government drips with the blood of innocent people.
She went on to say that blood flows in the streets of Zimbabwe. This made the judge cry.
The perpetrators of such lies do not even understand what the implications and impact of their actions.
Zimbabweans are not being fair to their nation and for some strange reason, the host nations are so gullible.
They believe anything said to them and never verify.
In some instances, immigration officers encourage people to seek asylum and tell tales about Zimbabwe’s Government’s ‘cruelty’.
Why are Zimbabweans at the forefront of vilifying their country?
They create fictitious stories and have nothing positive to say about their country.
Some Zimbabweans abroad are now in the habit of demonstrating against visiting dignitaries from their country.
These people want to justify their stay in diaspora and also for them not to be deported back to Zimbabwe.
Ironically some diaspora associations and organisations address the plight in their places of origin.
For instance, Syrian Diaspora organisations have been working tirelessly to deliver ambulances, medicine and perform trauma surgeries in the country’s liberated zones, improve sanitation and water-delivery systems, staff and fund schools, while providing shelter and generators to refugees.
However, Zimbabweans in the diaspora spend their time on Facebook and other social media platforms posting lies against their country and their countrymen.
Zimbabweans must organise themselves into diaspora organisations that invest back home and improve livelihoods of communities.
Lies not only threaten diaspora members’ legal rights and civil liberties, but also the rule of law, state sovereignty, and international human rights norms.
It is therefore vital for host-country governments to recognise the elevated threats and risks associated with fake diaspora activism so that they can proactively support and protect these communities.
The onslaught on Zimbabwe by the West and its allies is largely because of our own people who lie and try to gain sympathy by demonising their own country.
Zimbabweans in the diaspora must not seek recognition by lying.
Diasporans also scandalise their fellow Zimbabweans. They write articles talking bad about another fellow countrymen.
Many professional Zimbabweans in the UK have been reported to their regulating authorities.
Most of the complaints are frivolous and mostly packed with lies.
Some Zimbabweans do not want their fellows to work for them and when they engage a Zimbabwean they are not willing to pay for the work done.
But the worst thing is the demonising of the country just to get a visa. Zimbabwe is the only country we can call ours in the whole world.
Let us preserve our nation and protect it!