At 34, does #Zimbabwe need Smith’s laws?

via At 34, do we really need Smith’s laws? – DailyNews Live  15 APRIL 2014

As we prepare to celebrate 34 years of independence, the country’s leadership, led by President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF party must reflect on aspirations of the liberation war heroes who perished in their fight for freedom.

Great sons of Zimbabwe and real liberation struggle heroes like Josiah Magama Tongogara, Alfred Nikita Mangena, Lookout Masuku, Ndabaningi Sithole, Jason Ziyapapa Moyo, Leopold Takawaira, Joshua Nkomo, Hebert Chitepo and Solomon Mujuru among others, successfully fought injustices that had been imposed by the British colonisers. They fought for people’s liberties, so that Zimbabwe would be freed from the shackles of colonialism and that everyone would be equal before the law.

Ian Smith led a brutal and racist regime which trampled on people’s rights and created laws specifically to discriminate and abuse blacks, most notably, the Law and Order Maintenance Act (Loma).

Our liberation fighters sacrificed their lives so that brutal colonial laws would be removed. They must be turning in their graves as the country seems to have inherited archaic laws that are now being used by the black majority rulers against their fellow black and helpless subjects. Black Zimbabweans are being abused by Smith-style laws like the Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act (Aippa) and the Public Order and Security Act (Posa), which is basically the colonial Loma which has been renamed.

Are we to believe that the Zanu PF regime is obsessed with Loma that they use it against their own people 34 years after independence? God have mercy!

Lest this government has forgotten what liberty is all about? Mahatma Ghandhi, the preeminent leader of Indian nationalism in British-ruled India and who led the country to independence and inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world, sums up liberty in two famous quotes:

- Liberty and democracy become unholy when their hands are dyed red with innocent blood.

- To deprive a man of his natural liberty and to deny to him the ordinary amenities of life is worse then starving the body; it is starvation of the soul, the dweller in the body.

Zimbabweans are independent from colonial rule today but the question is are they really free? Are we as Zimbabweans enjoying our freedoms under Posa, Aippa and a regime which allows powerful and well-connected individuals to abuse the law and be the law unto themselves?

Mugabe must take it upon himself to smoke out elements within his regime who are using archaic laws to cause untold suffering to innocent Zimbabweans. Thirty four years into the promised land, why is the country’s leadership still using Smith’s laws to govern? Zimbabweans want answers.


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32 comments on “At 34, does #Zimbabwe need Smith’s laws?
  1. Umwrong says:

    A few things:

    Ian Smith is the lightning rod for criticisms against the Rhodesian government, but he wasn’t the government itself. Ask any person, black or white, who knew him personally after 1980 and they will tell you what kind of decent man he really was.

    Second, he actually stood against the world. The whole world. If anything, he should be revered for growing an enormous economy under the duress of total economic sanctions.

    Finally, Smith wasn’t Prime Minister until 1964. LOMA was passed by Her Majesty’s Government in 1960.

    While a good many things in Rhodesia should have been done differently, the country was a jewel and took care of its own. You didn’t have two million people starving. You didn’t have dams breaking leaving tens of thousands homeless. You didn’t have political parties in power denying food to supporters of the opposition.

    It was civilized to say the least.

    Look at Zimbabwe now.

    Enjoy your rot.

  2. John Thomas says:

    The author of this article is ignorant and confused. If he sits down and places his head between his knees and rally tries hard he may just kiss his own bum

    • Chemical Solution says:

      John Thomas,the one I personly think to be ignorant and confused its you,because you didn’t expartiate on the author of the article’s ignorance and confusion unless you clarify on the issue.

  3. Nkiwane (M'kiwa) says:

    This recent media obsession with Ian Smith is quite baffling to me?!?!?!?

    Zim Eye, Herald, New Zimbabwe, Sunday Mail – they are all at it! Weird. Is it an attempt to try to blame him for post-independence failings or what?

    And this article summation at the end makes no sense. Mugabe himself is the one using this legislation! If anything, he has strengthened it! Why would he repeal it?!?!?!

  4. MikeH says:

    Say what you like but I feel priviledged to have witnessed first hand what Ian Smith and his fellow Rhodesians achieved. Everyone, and I mean everyone, was a darn sight better off then than they are today under mugabe.

  5. Ngoto Zimbwa says:

    I am not quite sure how one calls a country civilised when the majority were treated as second class citizens in their own country by a white minority.

    If Smith was such an upstanding guy, why didn’t he repeal this LOMA thingy when he came to power?

    As for standing on his own against the rest of the world? Well there is the little mater of Apartheid South Africa, Right wing France/Germany and racist white America.

    A people should know their history in order to move on.

    The author is posing some very pertinent scenarios here and I feel we should give him some credit.
    ZANU has destroyed an albeit beautiful country and thriving economy and its in no small measure due to the Smiths of this world and their refusal to accept peaceful co-existence until forced to.

    “You can keep your kaffir president” was a refrain oft uttered by rhodies, from their seemingly unassailable economic strong holds, post independence.

    • Jono Austin says:

      ‘accept peaceful coexistence’ you’ve got to be kidding. There has been 34 years of non stop race baiting by the zanu media against whites. Whites this and whites that…How whites killed the comrades at Nyadzonia. There is not a peep out of the zanu media about the wickedness of Gukurahundi.
      ‘its in no small measure due to the Smiths of this world and their refusal to accept peaceful co-existence until forced to’. Frankly that statement is so outrageous that it makes you a racist. Where were the ‘Smiths’ refusing to accept peaceful coexistence post independence. Please tell me specifically what whites said ‘you can keep your kaffir president…’ You can’t you evil liar. But what I can tell you is that Mugabe has said the only good white is a dead one. What do you have to say about the racist state that Zimbabwe is now. Certain industries are only reserved for blacks. That is out and out racism. Chinamasa himself has said in parliament that land redistribution is racist. But hey the whites who decided to stay in Zimbabwe are the racists according to your twisted reasoning!

    • Ruramai says:

      Ngoto, the majority of Zimbabweans are treated like second class citizens by their own black government. Smith used race to allocate fewer resources to blacks but guess what, we stll enjoyed a higher standard of living than we do now where city children play in sewage.

      Mugabe discriminates on the basis of tribe (gukurahundi), and along party lines. The treatment he mets out to those of a different tribe and party is worse than ill treatment of blacks by Smith. Yes, it was humiliating to be treated as a second class citizens but today apart from the lack of liberty and basic freedoms where Mugabe goes to the extent of destroying short wave radios so that we are only subjected to zanu propaganda, people do not even have food, jobs, houses and medical care.

      Mugabe has a 20 vehicle motorcade while Smith had Peugeot 404. Mugabe lives in 3 different houses, having deemed that the very state house that was uaed by Smith was not good enough for him, he built a mansion but still uses both state houses.

      Rhodesia whites went to the University of Rhodesia while it is deemed inadequate by the ruling elite so hundreds of millions of dollars are spent on foreign uuniversities. They are even ashamed of their own hospitals.

      So, the humiliation of being paid a lower salary to that of a white man could never be worse than that of a man without the means to feed, clothes, educate and house his family while the ruling elite share 95% of the country’s wealth.

    • Umwrong says:

      You lost the plot before you even began, my friend.

      It wasn’t “peaceful coexistence” that he was forced to accept — it was capitulation to one of the most overtly racist dictators in sub-Saharan African history.

      And, that’s really saying something considering Idi Amin and Sese Seko.

      I’ve oft seen an interview with Smith played on state-run television, but it stops just short of the most important lines: there was nothing preventing a black man from holding his position as prime minister.

      Truly, as there were more black millionaires in Rhodesia than in all of her neighbours.


      But, here is a testament to how much he was revered in “democratic” Zimbabwe: when land reform began, intruders on his farm were arrested and removed. Twice. Once on orders from the president himself. The second time required only a call to the nearest station.

      LOMA is effectively a martial law. It’s practically necessary during civil war on your own soil.

      Any other questions?

  6. Someone ..I WON’T MENTION NAMES, on this forum said “some of these articles are not worth commenting about” How true. This one says”As we prepare to celebrate 34 years of independence,” Who is celebrating other than those on the gravy train may I ask?”Zimbabweans are independent from colonial rule today” tell that to the Chinese who beat up workers and underpay them in their own country. No, I will not comment any further on this rubbish.

  7. Mlimo says:

    nogo read your history the British only wanted to accept Mugabe or Nkomo to spite smith. These were the extremists that we didn’t want . History has proven that had Wilson and thatcher accepted the rhodesian solution Zimbabwe would still be the jewel and with a multi race society that would be the envy of the world . Instead we got Mugabe and a failed 34 years of theft and misrule.

    • NBS says:

      Yes! And it is a biblical principle that sometimes we want something so much that God will give it to us but also we will get leanness of soul. I think there were many, many true war veterans that would have led Zimbabwe a damn lot better than our current one. And it would be good for most of us to keep racism out of this because in God there is no colour and I think all most of us Zimbo’s want is our nation back to rebuild and be given a decent chance for everyone. ZPF have used the race/tribal card cleverly and we must no longer fall into their evil trap of divide and rule. We have lost tomorrow looking back at yesterday; that’s all ZPF have done. History is history. lets forgive and move on. There is huge power in that. If ZPf can keep us tearing at one another the suffering is prolonged.

  8. Joe says:

    We all fail to realize we needed smith and Mugabe to teach us a very good lesson. Stop treating each other as enemies. We are one people who love this land. Until we figure this out this simple but fundamental point we will never move forward from this finger pointing. Look where it’d got us just look damn it look

  9. holy moyo says:

    Ian smith did not murder his own people like Mgabe.Be was not a billionaire from corruption like like Mgabe.There was no starvation.unemployment .looting and We did not have Grace mugabes living like queens while people starved..
    I grew up in Njube going to hood schools.clinics..hospitals..good roads and people from all over Southern Africa came to work..learn and live in Rhodesia..What do we have now.Thieves..killers..robbers..mafia politicians in power for ever..
    Sitting at the top of thus gang of Thieves is Mgabe,his prostitute Disgrace , his extended family and his Henchman who pretend to be ministers and other hangers on..
    All the while the country burns..people starve..
    I love Ian Smith..Rest in Peace

    • Nkiwane (M'kiwa) says:

      @holy. That is true. Ian Smith never murdered his own. In fact, they seemed to regard him with God-like reverence, and many still do. Many blacks seem to have respected him – even if they didn’t necessarily like him.

      And look how he called all the farmers and industry chiefs together at UDI told them which crops they had to start growing, and goods they had to produce…. Sure there was a framework in place, but at the end, everyone pulled together and did it because they trusted him. Can you imagine that happening today under ZPF? Pf.

  10. LUCY says:

    Growing up in the 70′s I never went without basics like electricity or water. Never saw sewage flowing in the street.There were always lights in the streets and I had books at my government school.
    Not saying everything was honky dory. Some things needed redressing.The inequality between Black and White yes that was the norm and unacceptable but the economy was sound( as sound as it could be with sanctions in place) The blue print for development was there but ZPF came in and threw away the map (as thieves do). They failed to build on the gains of the previous regime prefering instead to plunder what was there. Now its all gone and they blame everyone else for their utter stupidity and lack of fore sight.

  11. Mukanya says:

    Yes! we made the bed lets lie on it.AIPPA+POSA too draconian than LOMA. Upi muchena akabatwa ne POSA?
    AT 34 mati madiyi- Ticharidza national anthem nemuridzo.

  12. munzwa says:

    Mlimo is correct, mistakes were made then. The attitude then of we want it all or we will destroy it still prevails today…

  13. Ngoto Zimbwa says:

    I will be the first in line to put a bullet in bobo should the occasion arise.
    We are, most of us agreed that zanu has brought nothing but misery to ordinary zimbos.

    I take exception to the attestation that smith and the rhodies were okay.

    Our leaders approached him back in the 60′s in a bid to negotiate the sharing of power. They were rewarded by detention and incarceration for ages.

    Hordes of youngsters then left in the early 70′s to join a liberation struggle.
    Liberation from what if things were so hunky dory?

    Come independence Bob tries to engage the famed RFU/ZFU in sorting out the land issue. On three occasions they literally laugh him out of court. Check out the Sunday Times (UK) for an interview with an erstwhile member of the famed farmers union.

    Tekere, a former zanu chef, tries to get a drink in a white club and is told to git, soon after independence, resorting to strong arm tactics to get served. One can only imagine the fate of the ordinary guy trying to go into one of these institutions!

    Research is always useful before accusations of lying are bandied about.

    • Ruramai says:

      Ngoto, the bottom line is Smith was a racist who treated us like second class citizens and admittedly, the white treated the issue of land as a legal rather than a moral issue.

      Bottom line is Mugabe has proved to be a worse tyrant in the sense that his treatment of his own fellow blacks has exceeded what Smith ever did. When comparing the two devils, Smith comes out as the better one. What is annoying is that Mugabe has validated Smith’s argument that blacks were not capable of running a country. It is disheartening that in spite of the humiliation many of us experienced in Rhodesia we have come to the realisation that we were better off under him. If you visit Matapi today you could very easily be hit by a bag full of human waste. That is behond humiliating.

      At the same time, Mugabe has invited the Chinese to come and humiliate us in our own country even further. At least Smith called this his home and invested in it. The Chinese simply plunder our resources.

    • Umwrong says:

      Wait… waaaait, wait, wait.

      You mean to tell me that a group of individuals came to the Rhodesian government proposing that there be a better means by which to open government access to the masses and were incarcerated?

      You failed to mention that, except for Sithole, they all threatened guerrilla action if the demands were rejected.

      Why, now, would they not be thrown in jail?

      Not everything was hunky bloody dory down in Rhodesia, but it was a well-developed (and continuously developing) place to live.

      Smith, for his part, said never in a thousand years.

      What you didn’t hear was his next statement saying that white interests and black interests can never supersede one another, but only exist in cooperation for the nation to avoid disaster.

      To say that he was correct is an understatement.

  14. Buchman-Turner-Overdrive says:

    As a Mthwakazi, I really miss Rhodesia. Our lives became hell on earth since day one in 1980. Here we go!!

    “Here’s the story of Rhodesia, a land both fair and great,
    on the eleventh of november an independent state,
    this was against the wishes of certain governments
    whose leaders tried to break us down and make us all repent.

    But we’re all Rhodesians and we’ll fight through thick and thin
    we’ll keep our land a free land, stop the enemy coming in,
    we’ll keep them north of the Zambezi till that river’s running dry
    and this mighty land will prosper for Rhodesians Never Die.

    They can send their men to murder and they can shout their words of hate
    but the cost of keeping this land free can never be too great
    for our men and boys are fighting for the things that they hold dear
    and this land and all its people will never disappear.

    Cause we’re all Rhodesians and we’ll fight through thick and thin
    we’ll keep our land a free land, stop the enemy coming in,
    we’ll keep them north of the Zambezi till that river’s running dry
    and this mighty land will prosper for Rhodesians Never Die.

    We’ll preserve this little nation for our childrens, childrens too,
    once you’re a Rhodesian, no other land will do
    we will stand tall in the sunshine, with the truth upon our side
    and if we have to go alone, we’ll go alone with pride.

    Cause we’re all Rhodesians and we’ll fight through thick and thin
    we’ll keep our land a free land, stop the enemy coming in,
    we’ll keep them north of the Zambezi till that river’s running dry
    and this mighty land will prosper for Rhodesians Never Die.

    Yes we’re all Rhodesians and we’ll fight through thick and thin
    we’ll keep our land a free land, stop the enemy coming in,
    we’ll keep them north of the Zambezi till that river’s running dry
    and this mighty land will prosper for Rhodesians Never Die.

    Cause we’re all Rhodesians and we’ll fight through thick and thin
    we’ll keep our land a free land, stop the enemy coming in,
    we’ll keep them north of the Zambezi till that river’s running dry
    and this mighty land will prosper for Rhodesians Never Die”.

  15. Saddened says:

    As a victim of racism in Rhodesia I cannot condone much of the way Smith ran the country however I can understand him putting his own kind first. Who does Mugabe put first except a minority who are given the freedom to pillage our country by while the majority are treated worse than Smith did. I never thought I would say living in Rhodesia was better than living in Zimbabwe but I can’t deny the fact that this is so.

  16. Littledorrit says:

    At 34 does Zimbabwe need Ian Smith’s laws? No, it needs Ian Smith

  17. Parangeta says:

    Ha! ha! ha! ha!

    “M’Garbage must take it upon himself to smoke out elements
    within his regime who are using archaic laws to cause untold
    suffering to innocent Zimbabweans”.

    M”Garbage, the great Gukurahundi, couldn’t smoke out a field mouse,
    the old, gonorrheac idiot!

  18. MikeH says:

    Here we have the half time score … ID SMITH 1 : RG MUGABE 0 … it’s going to take another 30 odd years, even with mugabe&co gone tomorrow, to sort out the mess.

  19. Buchman-Turner-Overdrive says:

    Indeed Rodesians never die!!

  20. Jaw Breaker says:

    All that’s been said is commendable.But all is talk.No spank.Freedom is never freedom unless one is prepared to die for it.Worse than that,one has to be willing to kill.That’s what defined the liberation era heroes.But unfortunately they still live in that era where everyone else is an enemy and the only way to their ‘liberties’ is murder,looting and the worst kind of governance.Until and unless We stand as one and with one voice say enough is enough-and truly mean it-Zimbabwe will remain a Chinese Colony

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