By now, much of the world will be aware of the ugliness that visited Zimbabwe at White City Stadium yesterday.
Some have called it the dark side of politics. We disagree. That is not politics. It is plain evil. This is not about loving or hating President Emmerson Mnangagwa. This is not about voting for him or for one of the 22 challengers from disparate ranks come July 30, 2018.
It is about human life.
Right now, dozens are in hospital. Their “crime” is that they were at White City Stadium. It is about building the Zimbabwe we want; a Zimbabwe in which ideas battle it out ahead of violence and the other blunt tools of the unconscionable and mentally indolent.
While we await the outcome of investigations to deliver justice on this heinous attack on innocent Zimbabweans, not to mention the umpteenth attempt on President Mnangagwa’s life, it must be made resoundingly clear that this nation will not accept efforts to derail the train.
We have all seen since late 2017 how – in his engagements with business, women, youths, the disabled, war veterans, traditional and religious leaders, and other demographic groups that make up our nation – President Emmerson Mnangagwa has placed discipline, hard work, honesty, peace, unity and Ubuntu at the core of the national agenda.
Whether that message has been delivered as Head of State and Government, as Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, or as Zanu-PF’s 2018 Presidential candidate, in these six pillars one can see an intergenerational consensus that transcends the ugliness of yesterday.
It is an intergenerational consensus that draws from history, to make sense of the present and create a new future; to create the Second Republic.
The First Republic (1980-2017) was established on the ethos of liberation, which is why its logical full stop should have been the Fast-Track Land Reform Programme. Like any dying horse, it fought to subsist, resisted nature; lashing potentially fatal but nonetheless last kicks of its hooves at the Gwanda and Bulawayo rallies on 2017.
But die it had to and die it did, leaving us on the doorstep of the Second Republic.
That President Mnangagwa was in both Gwanda and Bulawayo on Friday and Saturday last week, mere months after the First Republic made its most vicious public attacks on the inevitability of progress, was not only symbolic but also a living testament that this is a tide that cannot be turned.
Yesterday, somebody again thought they could turn the tide at White City.
They were wrong, are wrong and will remain wrong. As already said, our Second Republic is founded on discipline, hard work, honesty, peace, unity and Ubuntu.
It is about selfless and inspired service for the collective good and not the shallow egoism, glib politicking, thoughtless posturing, and Neanderthal-like violence we are seeing.
The last few years saw the major political characters in the ruling and opposition camps dragging Zimbabwe down. G40 lowered the bar on national discourse and it will do no good for Zimbabweans to delay the creation of the Second Republic any longer by allowing opposition political parties to pick up from where that cabal left off and take the nation on a headlong race to the bottom.
And it would be a betrayal of our destiny to allow the people behind the ugliness of White City yesterday to try and rob us yet again. We should continue striving upwards and forwards.
The Second Republic will continue to be built on discipline, hard work, honesty, peace, unity and Ubuntu.
It is on these six pillars that the economic growth, development and prosperity of the people will flourish, taking us all closer to our objective of being at least a middle-income economy by 2030. That same energy that some would still want to channel towards politics of hate must be directed towards economic activity; each one of us doing our bit in our big and little spheres.
Indeed, this is all about creating an economy that is “of the people, by the people, for the people”.
What happened at White City yesterday we have seen before. Historical records will tell you of the violent plots to stop the rise of the First Republic in 1980, in Gutu and in Harare.
That is what happens when merchants of evil try to crudely abort a logical future. But they can never stem the flow of history.
The Second Republic is the logical conclusion to White City.