Our spirit of resilience – Tendai Biti

via Our spirit of resilience – DailyNews Live by Tendai Biti  2 DECEMBER 2013  

Wananchi, the goat month draws to an end and not many will shed tears to see the echoes of its ironic laughter.

It has been a long month, with even longer scars and shadows of pain planted across the land.

The citizen has been put to the test, stretched ,tortured ,drained and twisted. Yet this is just the beginning.

The thing is in troubled times such as the present the Wananchi must keep their heads high and dig in.

It is so key to look the beast in the eye and not blink.

There are problems, there have been problems and there will be problems.

One is guaranteed of this as long as the country remains under the bondage of a predatory, tired, exclusive and exhausted nationalism.

There was a time not so long ago when the majority of Zimbabweans lived below the poverty datum line surviving on less than thirty five cents a day.

There was a time not so long ago 4 000 people were dying every week of hunger and disease and life expectancy had sunk to 34 for women and 37 for men.

But the Wananchi survived .The citizen stuck to it, buried its dead, wiped its tears and moved on.

The Zimbabwean spirit is exhibit A for resilience, for strength and for perseverance.

Across the country one sees the old, the young, the not so young pushing forward with the quest of a better life, of survival and resistance.

It may be in dusty fields that yield nothing. The kind of fields up there in Gwanda where they plant maize and reap stones. It may be some  damp factory in Gweru producing nothing except pain and grief.

It may be a poor mother whose husband ran away with the neighbour’s last born child selling tomatoes in Nketa.

It may be No Violet’s little monsters stealing guavas in some suburb in the middle of unhappiness.

The Wananchi get on with it.

Some will say its docility and plain stupidity.

Some will whinge and wince.

Yes some amongst us are professional whimpers, whingers and whiners.

It is the fault of everyone except ourselves. It is the fault of the movement that failed to deliver. It is the fault of the grade seven teacher who was always drunk.

You can tell the professional whinger from afar. They tend to know everything, have an opinion on everything except themselves. They tend to be a very ungrateful lot, a very judgmental lot.

They whinge everywhere, in church, in a bar, even when their poor team is winning.

I know this lot. It is only happy when it is unhappy.

It must grow up. It has stayed too young for too long.

The challenge of the past has always been to let dictatorship come in the way of our lives. The citizen adjusts and modifies one’s own life according to an unwritten code.

The citizen speaks in hushed tones and buries his head in the sand.

Fear becomes the dominant discourse. The citizen is very afraid.

Fear envelopes same. He lives outside himself like a shadow. He has no dignity.

He loses his manhood and can not look his children in the eye.

Other people are left to fight his wars as he swallows his fear in the decadence of immorality, drunkenness or long hours spend in church or a golf club.

That is what fear does.

I have seen this kind of fear. I have lost friends because of this fear.

There are funerals or weddings I have not been told or invited because of this fear.

But the citizen can not live a borrowed life because of the actions of a tottering regime arrested by its own contradictions and that is slowly suffering a slow painful death.

There is nothing as liberating as the capacity to speak one’s mind, to speak without riddles or idioms.

There is nothing as wholesome as being able to tell the truth and tell it as it is.

Even the regime itself envies and admires this.

So in the end freedom is just what it is, the ability to capture and control the little space one has.

Your own mouth, brain, pen and the ability to use same.

Happiness is not wealth or fame. Happiness is that capacity to be free.

As they say in Chiendambuya ,”kufa hakuuraye.”  Zikomo.


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38 comments on “Our spirit of resilience – Tendai Biti
  1. Pafunge says:

    I agree without reserve what you have said Mr Biti is the true image and likeness of Zimbos. The only exception is that they spend the long hours in church in escapism and not in true presence with God which liberates totally from all forms of fear. The bible alludes to the fact that children of God are not made of fear. Yeshua (Jesus) emplores us thd children of God to emmulate him He who was fearless and spoke His mind.

  2. super mondo says:

    people thank their god for the fact they have a meal today,when people are weak and downtrodden by those who take away there chance of happiness which is very basic opportunity created by a fair government. these people must find the strength to unify and create a situation for a fair society by hook or by crook.

  3. thembani says:

    At times this man Biti shows lack of brains.He praises gono and accepts the leadership of a moron like Tsvangirai.I respected him as a leader, but now ?

    • masvukupete says:

      @thembani. What have you done yourself to better the lives of those around you and the welfare of the country. Yes Tsvangirai may have his shortcomings but he has challenged the system while you have the luxury only to criticise without offering any solutions. If you are up to it why not join ZPF or MDC or form your own party and bring the change that you can, and we will sit and criticise your lack of “intelligence”. Sunday Marimo once said “The advantage with those who sit in the terraces is that their team never gets to kick the ball”. Imimi who know what leadership is all about, why dont you get stuck in and show us how it is supposed to be done.

    • Nomsa Chiga says:

      You have to be patient in order, to rule wakamhanya, uno mhara before you archive anything.

  4. Nzou says:

    I think Tendai is fighting his own internal battle. I sincerely hope he wins

    • Makotsi says:

      What is coming from Biti is normal from one occupying the defeated’s corner. The only danger is his overt subversive message for the peace loving Zimbabweans to abandon peaceful existance. Biti we are much wiser than you think. We liberated ourselves and our liberty is threatened by the likes of you and your foreign handlers. Stop kidding on us.

      • itai says:

        @Makotsi Zanu loves people like you! Your wisdom counts for nothing if you accept this barbarism from this regime. They have done absolutely nothing for Zim excerpt to loot it’s resources and starve everybody else!

      • Tiger Shona says:

        A Zanu PF supporter that would like to keep his ill gotten gains

  5. ROCKSTONE says:

    Which foreign handlers are u wharfling about????!!

  6. Munozviitirei Zimbabwe says:

    God bless Zimbabwe.

  7. Rwendo says:

    “Nothing is to be feared but fear itself. Nothing grievous but to yield to grief” So wrote Francis Bacon hundreds of years ago. As a nation, we have not stood up well against these words over the last 10 years.

  8. Rippoff says:


  9. bigie says:

    The one I always thought of as a true leader ” Tendai Biti” seems to be just as deluded as every other politician in Zimbawe. There is nobody that we can rely on, and i fear this is the end of a the Democratic MDC, Zimbabwe will never be the same again. How can you forgive, justify, or even try to defend (Gono) Zanu-Pf and the Rest. Zimbabweans are either Stupid, Have a very short memory or are just plain Cowards. Since 1980 how many people have lost there Lives to this Regime ??

  10. bigie says:

    Former Finance minister, Tendai Biti has heaped praise on Reserve Bank governor Gideon Gono, describing him as a man with Zimbabwe at heart.

    Speaking in an interview with a local radio station this week, the ex-finance minister described his former subordinate as a patriotic man who served Zimbabwe well.

    “Gono has the nation at heart although some people wanted to use him and they indeed used him and just dumped him like that,” Biti said without giving details.

    “We first had challenges, but eventually we had a very good working relationship. He (Gono) had the nation at heart,” Biti stated.

    Gono’s term as Central Bank boss is coming to an end today after serving for 10 years.

    He was appointed as Central Bank chief in 2003 at the height of economic downfall but is credited for standing the heat and saving the economy through his “failure is not an option” approach.

    Biti and Gono worked together during the lifespan of the inclusive government which was made up of three political parties.

    Biti, who is also secretary-general of the opposition MDC, said before their relationship became cordial, it was characterised by suspicion and untrustworthiness, but they eventually found each other.

  11. bigie says:


  12. Premier 2 says:

    In as much as i respect Biti, he seems to be fighting against something which he can not clearly define. There are succession issues to address in his own party and loss of Jul-2013. Biti needs to cool down and accept the reality that Mugabe and Zanu are in charge

  13. kiddnile says:

    I feel for those who died for Zimbabwe that never came. The RGM Zimbabwe was not worth the sacrifice. The Ian Smith Rhodesia was heaven compared to these murderers & looters.

  14. msizeni silwelani says:

    Were so resilient under the adverse economic policies pioneered by Gono the man you so much praised Biti. Now what are you up to? Praise us to test our political direction? No.

    We look up to your guidance from your contributions not such creative art that sets you on the political wire. Since your heaping of praise on Gono, i now take all your posts with maximum care. Or clarify your presidential aspirations then you gain or loose my respect. With us or against us.

  15. Mdidi says:

    izinto zamashona bakithi!

    • Kubota Binga says:

      Vele belisithi lizafikisana ngaphi, lizasetshenziswa ngu Tsvangirayi, elilahlele le, U Mugabe laye alithathe elise le. Zim voting pattern will take long to change, uni-party rule will only be possible with ZANU PF. If matabeles want a piece of power, we need an inclusive MDC ready to power share with someone else even ZANU PF, whether you like it or not for the benefit of all zimbabweans. 33% of seats is quite significant and quickly refuse to work with ZANU PF soon after election results are announced is plain stupid and an insult to the people that voted. Even though a lot of you feel it was prudent, well my view is that it’s stupid.

      Phaphamani bakithi! Amubuke nobakwesu.

  16. msizeni silwelani says:

    We were so resilient under the adverse economic policies pioneered by Gono the man you so much praised Biti. Now what are you up to? Praise us to test our political direction? No.

    We look up to your political guidance from your contributions not such creative writing that sets you on the political wire. Since your heaping of praise on Gono, i now treat all your posts with maximum care. Or clarify your presidential aspirations then you gain or loose my respect. With us or against us.

  17. Khaya'bonina says:

    Unfortunately a man who is a public figure like Biti is mixing up himself with this site which is not good for him at all , i am still saying as i have said before , Biti must refrain from forward his opinions on this site , he must respect his intergrity or else he will be looser . Biti go out to the people and lets hear from you how we go forward , 2018 is closer , your ideas must find the people out there , this site is not for the people out there waiting for you , why do you have to bring yourself down , you are bigger than this site , please it to us , maintain your intergrity .

  18. Khaya'bonina says:

    leave it to us

  19. Deni Bond says:

    Zanu matakanana chete

  20. Martin says:

    Its true honourable Biti leave those with babaric minds,its a shame 2 them.

  21. TM says:

    Tendai praised Gono where he had to and rightly pointed out that Gono wa used and damped. The majority who have responded saying Biti should have buried Gono in the newspaper interview, are very people Biti is saying are professional whiners. They want things done for them while they watch from a safe distance. Vamwe nekuchema mumapepa kuti mwana akanzi munhu mutema nemurungu.

  22. mutema says:

    “Wananchi” means what Advocate Biti ?

  23. MATONSI says:

    Julius Ceasar said cowards die many times before their death, an oldman told his grand child that manner times it will be a coward pointing at the ruins of a hero. The true heroes were the Zororo Duri Joshua Nkomo, Tongogara, Rex Nhongo, Nikita Mangena, Lookout Masuku and Edgar Tekere. Those who were chasing concubines in the streets of some African States are now claiming the mentle and suppressing and stealing the resources from the poor masses. One day God will judge you like the Libyan Dictator

  24. MATONSI says:

    As long as cowardice, docility and being petrified reins criminals will continue to maraud and rough- shod the masses like buffaloes over ants, forever.

  25. MATONSI says:

    As long as cowardice, docility and being petrified reins criminals will continue to maraud and rough- shod the masses like buffaloes over ants, forever. Zimbabweans must Nkrumah’s book to my mother, Mandela’s CRY THE BELOVED COUNTRY AND Martin Luther King junior :SWEET VICTORY COMES WITH A PRICE BUT REWARDS ARE BOUNTFUL= INFINITY. Hapana chinouya wakagarira makumbo zvonoto shura.

  26. MATONSI says:

    Your Mugabe once said kana uchida kurima munda mune magutsa unoita sei?

  27. Marcus says:

    Always be wary of politician.Never pin your hopes on then,from any political party in the world.They’re selfish and a self-serving lot.When they speak in public they glorify themselves.They pretend to know our problems,when they are just seeking to reproduce the same status quo .No leader assumes power with the aim of relinguishing it.

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