In fact, I believe that my childhood experiences of watching those in my neighborhood of Redcliff being gruesomely beaten up, and their homes burnt to the ground by ZANU PF thugs – is what played a critical role in instilling an intense loathing for any form of injustice in me, as well as the passion to always bravely speak out for those suffering under the yoke of oppression.
Of course, the bullying I endured in my early schooling days most likely also was a huge influence – nonetheless, I received my first harrowing understanding of the evil of the ruling party (especially in 1984, when I was just an eleven year old boy, doing Grade 5) – leaving me in no doubt that Zimbabwe was led by the Devil himself!
As it turned out, the hideous sadistic ZANU PF regime has lived up to its disgraceful diabolical character for the past 42 years of its ruinous reign of terror – whereby, it has dismally failed the people of Zimbabwe, yet only holding on to power thorough brazen cruelty and thuggery.
The combination of my inherent love for writing – in which, I would even produce a handwritten newspaper for my classmates, and eventually contributing regularly to a weekly Kwekwe publication, whilst still in high school in the late 1980s – is what made me into the social justice advocate I am today.
In other words, ZANU PF’s 42-year-long vile leadership is what created the intense disdain I harbor for oppression, injustices, and suffering unleashed upon the ordinary people of Zimbabwe by the cold-hearted political elite – who believe that brutalizing and instilling terror in a disgruntled defenseless population is how to remain in office.
At times, I feel as if I have finally gotten over the nightmare and trauma of the horrendous events I witnessed in my childhood – with neighbors’ blazing houses lighting up the dark night, whilst loud pained cries of children cut through the usually quiet of our small town, as they helplessly watched their parents being beaten up to a pulp by ruling party youths.
In all this, my parents and I hid in their bedroom, crippled by fear – as we sat in the darkness, whilst watching the scene from the window.
Nevertheless, this morning reminded me how these horrible memories were still alive and fresh in the recesses of my mind.
I had not heard of the most recent brutal attack on elderly villagers in Murewa by ZANU PF thugs.
However, when I watched the video early today – with all these elderly women and men being sadistically interrogated by some party youth, who appeared to relish this evil act (even filming the entire process, possibly for their depraved pleasure), and the subsequent horrendous gory violent attack – I could not stop tears filling up my eyes.
What justification is there in beating up people simply because they are accused of supporting the opposition?
It is even more disturbing when these are children savagely assaulting their own grandmothers and grandfathers!
What has ZANU PF done to our youth?
Is this not evil of the highest order?
In fact, does this not expose the manner of people leading this country?
What kind of leadership allows, or even encourages, such wickedness – if not the Devil himself?
Where are our children being indoctrinated with such dark souls, full of hatred and evil?
Is that what they are being taught at these so-called ‘schools of ideology’?
This then begs the question – what is this ‘ideology’ that guides ZANU PF?
Do they even have a clear ideology – except empty meaningless mantras, that are forced down the citizenry’s throats, through ruthless aggression and violence?
It is so disingenuous listening to all those in power in Zimbabwe constantly pontificating about peace and unity each time they are on public fora.
Nevertheless, no one can deny that these are merely words of deceit – designed to hoodwink the world into believing that we have a civilized modern-day peace-loving regime – yet, in the privacy of closed doors, they busily encourage their supporters to unleash the most heinous atrocities on the citizenry, including their own grandmothers and grandfathers.
What ‘peace and unity’ can this regime seriously preach?
Do they even know the meaning of the term?
Are they not the same architects of the 1980s Gukurahundi genocide in the Midlands and Matebeleland provinces – in which, over 20,000 innocent unarmed villagers were callously massacred?
Did they not murder, in cold blood, hundreds of opposition supporters in the early 2000s – another traumatic event I personally witnessed with my own eyes, as homes of Redcliff MDC (led by Morgan Richard Tsvangirai) members were razed to the ground, and their occupants barbarically battered?
What I find rather troubling is how ZANU PF has chosen to tarnish the image of one of the most principled and justice-loving people to ever walk this land – Herbert Wiltshire Chitepo.
There is no greater insult on the great lawyer and revolutionary than to name a place of indoctrination after him – where our children are taught to hate and harm their own fathers, mothers, grandmothers and grandfathers, in the name of supporting the party.
Had Chitepo been alive today, he would have never endorsed, let alone stood with, such a sickening betrayal of not only our African ethos, but also the values on which the liberation struggle was waged.
Chitepo did not sacrifice his life for ZANU PF – but, for the entirety of the people of Zimbabwe.
He stood for the rights, freedoms, and betterment of every citizen of this country.
No wonder those who hijacked the liberation struggle – and, subsequently took over power at independence in 1980 – could not stomach such truly selfless values, and decided to eliminate their own.
That is why the Zambia government led by Kenneth Kaunda arrested most of the ZANU leadership based in the country in 1975, after the assassination of Chitepo, via a car bomb.
All this naming institutions of terror after legends like Chitepo and General Josiah Magama Tongogara (another one killed under suspicious circumstances) is nothing but a ploy to shield the truth and twist history, in panting these iconic leaders as supporting oppression and tyranny.
As a matter of fact, we can even say, Chitepo himself was a victim of ZANU PF barbarity and savagery.
I am quite certain these great men are turning in their graves today – in horror at how the country they valiantly fought for had tuned out under the disastrous misrule of those who hijacked the struggle.
I am also sure they are not particularly surprised!
However, my greatest sadness is reserved for those youth who have allowed themselves to be abused by their leaders, in carrying out such deplorable abominable acts.
As someone who witnessed at least two dark episodes of ZANU PF-inflicted terror in my life – the end for those involved is never good.
Those who terrorized residents in my town of Redcliff both in the 1980s and early 2000s – leaving many dead, severely beaten up, and having lost their properties – were people we knew, mostly domestic workers.
We watched, in utter disbelief, as one-by-one they lost their minds – no longer able to manage their own lives; and some even living, like wild animals, in the nearby bush between Redcliff and Rutendo suburbs – in which, one of the leaders was later found dead.
Taking another life, and playing God, always has dire consequences – as these become spiritual issues.
Tragically, these youth will be too drunk or high on illicit drugs – which I honestly believe are brought into the country by the same ruling elite – to fully comprehend the broader implications of what they are getting themselves into.
I am not saying they are not responsible for their barbaric actions – of which, they definitely should be held accountable – but just pointing out the folly of our youth submerging themselves in drugs and alcohol.
Furthermore, it is so shameful witnessing how some immoral Christian church leaders are throwing their lot with such wickedness – yet, normally, are the people supposed to be speaking out against these sins being inflicted upon God’s children, by a satanic regime.
Now I understand what transpired during the time of the evil King Ahab and his wife Jezebel – who had their own coterie of false prophets, encouraging them to worship Baal.
Zimbabwe desperately and urgently needs real men and women of God to raise up, like the biblical Elijah, and lead in resisting the Devil who has taken charge of our nation.
We are on a dangerous path of destruction – being driven and orchestrated by those in power, who have nothing to offer the citizenry, except misery and tears.
The people of Zimbabwe should bravely stand up against this evil – or else, the situation will only worsen.
We all now have to fervently pray to Jehovah God to intervene in saving our nation from the grip of the Devil.
We need you dear God – please, help us!
Tendai Ruben Mbofana is a social justice advocate, writer, researcher, and social commentator. Please feel free to WhatsApp or Call: +26371667700 | +263782283975, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org