In every house there are bound to be challenges.
They may be insignificant, manageable, or seemingly insurmountable.
However, no matter how big or small they may appear on the surface, there is always one constant – the head of the household does not lamely sit on his laurels, as if indifferent to the pertaining difficulties – but, should be seen to be earnestly and promptly taking action in finding solutions, and fixing whatever problems there may be.
He can never be sleeping on the wheel, so to speak – but, be at the forefront of tackling and battling those challenges, with the unyielding force and determination of confronting a reviled enemy.
That is why in history, we had kings and queens who always led their armies on the battleground from the front – together with the nation’s flag to show that this was the represention or embodiment of the entire kingdom, and if he or she was defeated, then it meant all his or her subjects had also been vanquished.
Which explains why in the Bible, a leader like king David was credited with conquering many nations – this was not merely by virtue of him being the head of the kingdom, but in fact, he would have been right there on the battleground, leading his men in war.
This is where the term commander-in-chief of the defence forces emanated – since the “commander of commanders” of the kingdom’s military was supposed to be right there in the war effort, issuing orders based on firsthand knowledge, and experiencing the battle as the rest of his men.
In other times, as occured to king Saul – he could also be killed at the front lines, as he fought for this nation.
I look back at such valour, and wonder to myself – what ever happened to such great leaders and leadership?
Why do we not see them anymore?
Have our leaders become lazy, selfish, greedy, and cowardly – such that, they would rather the nation endured the brunt of whatever modern-day “battles” we may face, whilst they (leaders) sit comfortably, and in relative safety, shielded from any of the inconveniences that other countrymen and women face on a day to day basis?
Is there, then, any wonder why our nations never seem to ever emerge from their unbearable and painful challenges – when those expected to lead in the battle are hardly affected, and never share in the suffering the rest will be undergoing?
Surely, let us say, for instance in our own Zimbabwe, the president and his family went for days without running water, electricity outages being a daily fixture, and unable to afford even the most basic of necessities due to prohibitive prices, whilst earning their salaries in a virtually useless currency that kept depreciating on a daily basis.
When they fell sick, the only health care facilities they could afford were public institutions – which would not even have the most basic medical needs – whilst at the same time, their children unable to receive adequate learning due to teacher incapacitation, and lack of proper educational material.
Would they allow such a situation to continue for a day longer – or, they would “burn the midnight oil” desperately searching for a solution?
However, in our country, these apparently never-ending problems facing the nation have been with us for the better part of two decades – not as a result of anything seemingly insurmountable, but simply because our leaders do not lead from the front, and so are not being affected.
That is why they feel no shame at all telling a nation that has been burdened by untold economic hardships, whilst wallowing in extreme poverty for twenty years, that – they will build the country brick upon brick (or inch by inch), and we have to endure this immeasurable suffering for the next eight years, as we wait for the envisioned “Vision 2030”!
Of course, no sane person can ever believe that individuals who caused a problem – due to their own unforgivable ineptness, mismanagement, and corruption – can be the same people expected to come up with a solution.
Nonetheless, the truth of the matter is that, there will never be any “Vision 2030” – just as there was no “Education and health for all by the year 2000″, or ” Vision 2020″ – as long as those supposed to be our leaders are not in the same boat as the rest of us…as we suffer alone, whilst they enjoy the fat of the land.
Let us not forget that, when king David became too comfortable, and corrupted by his power – eventually, deciding not to go to batte (so as to lead his men from the front) but rather opting to stay at home – he ended up committing the most ruinous and heinous sins of his life.
The solution to Zimbabwe’s problems can only be solved by those who are also experiencing and feeling the pain as everyone else.
Those are the leaders who will lead from the front – facing the “enemy’s bullets” as the rest of the citizenry – ensuring that they feel firsthand the urgency of the matter.
Besides, why would anyone who truly loves his country, sit back whilst it becomes the laughing stock of the world?
© Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice activist, writer, and social commentator. Please feel free to contact him on WhatsApp/Call: +263715667700 / +263782283975, or Calls Only: +263788897936 / +263733399640, or email: email@example.com