Responding to public criticism for encouraging young Zimbabweans to leave the country and seek green pastures abroad, Hopewell Chin’ono, a Zimbabwean journalist, tweeted that activists were being left on their own upon being arrested, killed or jailed by the Zanu PF regime.
Chin’ono said it was not worth for young people to risk their lives for political parties that will not do anything to help them upon picking problems in the struggle.
Chin’ono recently tweeted about the plight of Zimbabweans who have been jailed or killed for standing up against the ZANUPF regime.
He explained that there is no leadership structure that has been able to manage and assist the families of these comrades in the past 20 years.
He cited the example of journalist Itai Dzamara, who was killed in 2015 by the regime after his one-man protest angered it. No coherent plan was put in place by the alternative to assist his family, wife, and kids. The opposition and civil society have wealthy men and women, but they never saw it fit to build a fund for families of these slain comrades.
Only this year has a Zimbabwean woman moved by the plight of Dzamara’s wife and kids assisted Dzamara’s wife to get a job in Britain.
Chin’ono said, “Zimbabwe is a nation where people lie to each other for feel-good factor, they are big talkers but very thin on action.” In recent times, two Zimbabwean opposition politicians Job Sikhala and Jacob Ngarivhime were jailed for protesting against State corruption.
Their families have struggled financially and have only been helped by ordinary citizens through Go-Fund campaigns and individual handouts. It should never have been like that.
“When Robert Mugabe and Nelson Mandela were jailed, their parties took care of their families fundraising both locally and internationally. This had a massive effect on recruiting more fighters to take on the colonial regimes in South Africa and Rhodesia because they knew that if they were jailed or killed, their families would get assistance in their absence,” Chin’ono added.
Chin’ono’s tweet highlights the need for a leadership structure that can manage and assist the families of those who stand up against oppressive regimes.
It is important for opposition parties and civil society to build funds for families of slain comrades so that they can get assistance when needed.
This will not only help those who are fighting against oppressive regimes but also encourage more people to join the fight knowing that their families will be taken care of if something happens to them.
In light of Chin’ono’s statement, it is clear that there is an urgent need for Zimbabwean leaders to take responsibility for their fallen comrades’ families. The lack of support from opposition parties and civil society has left many struggling financially, with no hope for assistance. It is time for Zimbabweans to come together and build funds that can help these families in their time of need.