Spare us the #din, please!

13 Jul, 2016 - 00:07 0 Views
Spare us the #din, please!

The Herald

my turnAnd it would seem with the rush to get hashtags, Zimbabwe will soon be such a noisy place to live. All this noise is, of course, coming from empty vessels – forgive the pun. Nations are not built out of such vacuities and hashtags and the sooner pastors, who are so empty of any cogent ideas except for populist noises, and their ilk, realise that the better for them.

IT obviously takes so much to rise above the din and confusion and be someplace quiet where you see a roaring madding crowd from a position that is anything between bird’s eye-view and an omniscient god.

Those that get caught in madding crowds, or let’s have a contemporary example – a traffic jam in Harare (and it’s not the worst place, anyway) – know how it is to wiggle out, patiently and with all the faith in the world.

Sometimes you become impatient and entertain the idea of leaving the damned car right where you are and walk away.

But that could worsen your cause – and that of others.

Hence, it is all reasonable, where you cannot help carnage of that kind, to gather your courage and patience, pray, think about other things and hope for the best.

Hum a tune.

Think of the day ahead or the family and any pleasant thoughts of the day.

Then, metre by metre you ease forward, as if measuring gingerly each inch of the road.

And when you have your composure, you will be in a world where clarity rules and where the noise without ceases to matter.

All that matters are your thoughts, your vision – your mission.

When the eternity of, and time in hell ceases, you break free into the freedom and tranquillity of another world where you watch madness going on and on.

We are sure it is the same thing as being detained at some kind mental asylum – and you eventually have the privilege of coming out one sane piece; to look back.

This, of course, is to be too imaginative.

The point that we were trying to put across is that there is a lot of noise in Zimbabwe at the moment, especially relating to our politics.

This, of course, is far from the traditional bickering that has characterised inter-party and intra-party politics.

Something has emerged and quite transcended that.

No doubt, the noises of the past couple of weeks has registered in every corner of Zimbabwe and interested parts of the world: there are individuals that are trying to craft a new and quite noisy a narrative for us.

It began with that call for a “shutdown” which was supported by two forces – one under the banner of #Tajamuka (colloquial for “rebellion”); and the other by a pastor using the hashtag #ThisFlag.

These two camps, being fronted and manned by young people, flooded the social media landscape with messages encouraging Zimbabwe to stay away from work with other messages on the same platforms clearly agitating for violence and confrontation with authorities.

A curious feature of the glut of messages were the “confessions” and exhortations by supposedly Government and Zanu-PF youths and members also encouraging people to stay away from work.

And when a strike that had been called by unions representing civil service workers went ahead – quite successfully, while ordinary people and business owners found it too risky for limb and property to venture out last Wednesday – the two groups went over the moon.

Suddenly, people behind and associated with the two groups and their hashtag movements got to believe they could own and control Zimbabwe, its discourse and people.

What is more, they think they can own a future.

The story of that donkey that confused Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem for its own, is obviously lost to them.

We hear that there have been calls for another “shutdown” today and tomorrow.

It was the said Pastor Evan Mawarire who called for that and he posted videos to that effect.

He has received some sympathy from last week’s constituency – but not all of it.

In fact, the Tajamuka group is against call for another stayaway, which is mostly due to their growing discomfort with the flag pastor whom they feel is stealing the limelight.

It will be useful to point out the fact that the Tajamuka group is essentially composed of MDC-T youths who grew out of the so-called Occupy Unity Square movement.

The Tajamuka boys are fronted by Promise Mkwananzi who seized the initiative when the majority of Occupy activists were arrested as a 16-day protest initially led by Zimbabwe Activists Alliance was hijacked by a Patson Dzamara before it petered out.

Hence, there is a strong MDC-T DNA in the Tajamuka movement, which is basically trying to lead the flailing mainstream MDC-T party.

Hence, even as we are talking – and without the noise of the Tajamuka/MDC-T component – what was hoped to be another “shutdown” is all but hot air.

It is such a bold declaration – and a prediction that we made.

We even bet the bottom dollar for it!

And as the day progresses, and tomorrow comes, it is hoped that some lessons are learnt.

The lesson of the donkey is a poignant one.

We also daresay that it is not wise to go with the flow.

Hence, the same dollar is for the taking, if the “shutdown” consummates!

But it would seem that we are in a season of din.

Real noise – noise in the literal sense.

We hear that Thokozani Khupe, the acting president of the MDC-T, has planned a “protest” in which women will be beating pots and toyi-toyi “for a better Zimbabwe”.

The Daily News reports that the protest is dubbed #beatthepot (yet another hashtag!).

Khupe told the paper: “All women of Zimbabwe are invited to rise up with pots and wooden spoons as we harness our power as women in organising and mobilising ourselves against the damaging effects of hunger and poverty to our families. The #beatthepot campaign is asking all women to bring their empty pots to a peaceful protest whereby women will be beating their empty pots to symbolise the hunger and poverty which they are currently experiencing under the government of Mugabe and Zanu-PF.”

While it is within everyone’s democratic right to protest or otherwise gather for whatever cause, one can see clearly that this is becoming ridiculous.

And it is even worse for Madame Khupe – is this the best idea she could muster as the aspiring leader of the opposition?

And it would seem with the rush to get hashtags, Zimbabwe will soon be such a noisy place to live.

All this noise is of course coming from empty vessels – forgive the pun.

Nations are not built out of such vacuities and hashtags and the sooner pastors, who are so empty of any cogent ideas except for populist noise, and their ilk, realise that the better for them.

Zimbabwe certainly deserves better, even coming from the opposition, than that because after all the hashtags are exhausted and populist noises die down there are fundamental economic and social questions that need to be answered, convincingly.

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