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for cash - Even for enlightened Batswana
February 04, 2013
My last visit
to Gaborone was in the late 1980s. Subsequent trips terminated in
Francistown. Mitigating devastating effects of President Robert
Mugabe-s Kamikaze pricing policies! Looking in from outside,
Gaborone is a bustling cosmopolitan endowed with surreal imagery.
At first glance, one is struck with a feeling that President 'Retired
Lieutenant General Sir Seretse Khama- Ian Khama has succeeded
in galvanising this vast Southern African nation around the values
of growth and stability. You are tempted to assume good governance,
as inherited from Sir Seretse Khama, founder of the Botswana Democratic
Party [BDP], is steeped in the traditional kgotla system. Grassroots
democratic and development discourse.
politicians - particularly Gilson Saleshango-s Botswana
Congress Party [BCP] and rival Duma Boko-s Botswana National
Front [BNF] - may not equate BDP to Zimbabwe-s ZANU-PF - that
habitually predatory human rights offender. However, President Ian
Khama, like President Robert Mugabe, is considered a benevolent
dictator. The BDP-s Back to School policy has been labelled
populist electoral gimmickry. It is said, just like in ZANU-PF,
tenderpreneurship creates a ruling elite commandeering Botswana
into a corruptive vote-buying abyss. Satar Dada - like Emerson
Mnangagwa of ZANU-PF - has been fingered by opponents for
pushing the ruling party in the trail of selfish materialism.
hullabaloo of political bickering, a 'refugee- from
Zimbabwe would still feel secure in serene rural Mochudi [Botswana]
than toxic Mashonaland Central [Zimbabwe]. The fierce political
rivalry in Botswana breeds contempt but certainly not violence.
Nonetheless, spasms of xenophobic behaviour from Tswana hosts are
frequent, especially against Zimbabwean men. Who can blame them?
Zimbabwean males flaunt around an aura of self-righteous, conquer
all machismo that irritates even the most tolerant of all. The influx
of an alien breed of Homo erectus with capacity to lure women via
the path of least emotional resistance is our undoing! After all,
when your government treats you like trash, those you escape to
toss you into the dust bin.
At one time
Batswana were 'poorer- than us - despised as semi-literate
pastoralists desperate for 'enlightenment-. Strange
enough, opposition leaders feel that Batswana-s paralytic
subservience to the Khama dynasty resulted from Seretse-s
marriage to Ruth Williams - a white British woman who instilled
a sense of 'assimilado- with all-things British in them.
As a result, Batswana struggle to contend with white supremacy.
Once Ian and his two twin brother siblings decide to marry 'another
white whomen- - street lingo - we might as well
kiss the Ngwato black legacy goodbye!
My own opinion
is that Botswana is economically galloping. Zimbabwe - currently
burdened with a political contraption called indigenisation - stands
paralysed by debilitating authoritarian dictatorship. ZANU-PF is
allergic to economic advancement, obsessed with property plunder.
Botswana boasts electrified homes from Ramokgwebana to Mafeking,
with dual carriage ways that make Zimbabwe-s main roads look
something like Roman cobblestone strips. Well-lit streets, dustbins
in public buses, 'loud- colourful billboards, late model
cars and pothole free roads are the rule. Careless garbage disposal
is punishable by law - hence Botswana-s clean surroundings.
The occasional 'peep peep- by over enthusiastic 'kombi-
drivers, cluttered plastic market stalls are crude reminder that
one is not far from Zimbabwe. Astronomical internet browsing rates
in five-star hotels is not exactly an example of enlightened African
like my 'poor- Zimbabwe, has not been spared the deluge
of vote-buying patronage and faith healing 'salvation-for-cash-
crusades. I would have thought Batswana are more discerning. But
then again, being liberal that I am, individual choice is the sole
determinant of one-s destiny. If Batswana have enough disposable
incomes to 'buy salvation- from rampaging crusaders
of 'false gospel truths- - it is their sacrosanct,
My only advice
to Zimbabweans is that wealth creation is no gospel miracle but
hard work. We have to learn from Botswana that good national governance,
political tolerance and respect for citizenry have everything to
do with advancement. Praise-singing and blind fanaticism is a curse.
No amount of succumbing to cult leaders will transform Africans
into overnight millionaires. 'David Koresh-type- lustful
materialism, vote-buying can only be described as criminal deception.
But then who am I? I merely observed how, like we Zimbabweans, gullible
Batswana are now exposed to 'dirty money-. For once,
I have to convince them that there is no political or spiritual
salvation in cash.
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