End of the Winter of Slogans – Season of Promises

It has been a Winter of Slogans – a season of promises, both real and false. Thank God, it’s all coming to an End! What a Winter it was – from the hip-throwing and bum-jiving Mbare Chimurenga choir to the singing and jovial red-berets clad MDC supporters (humming Machinja ane rudo achapiwa korona). It is the irony of history; we all become prisoners of reality and deceit. All of a sudden the ordinary villager became either a King or a Queen. Suddenly, the ordinary men and women became special – that is what happens in the world of politics. It was an eventful winter, full of surprises, making and re-making of grand coalitions, singing, and ululations and of course it was a winter which saw the display of the ugly politics of personality and dearth of internal party democracy among the main political parties in existence in the Zimbabwean political scene. It was a winter of canvassing for votes – setting a stage for the battle to win minds and hearts.

It was a winter, when we were all reminded of Ben Okri’s words that, ‘we are masters of our own destiny’. It was the same winter – when we got back on a memory lane to fish out the legendary Bob Marley’s famous lyrics, ‘None but ourselves can free our minds’. Indeed politicians braced the cold short winter days giving both fine and crude speeches and several other election promises. We also smiled as we received several food hand – outs (mealie – meal, kapenta, rice, maize seed etc.) But, we still laughed our lungs out and also became equally confused to hear that politicians were slashing the debts and arrears we owe the rural and urban councils. In low tones we said the Gods Must Be Crazy.

We all braced the cold weather to hear the promises of building bridges where there are no rivers. We danced and laughed with them – suddenly they became ‘men of the people’. Like the character of the old man (Garabha) in Charles Mungoshi’s novel Waiting for the Rain he refers to Lucifer by saying ‘he is no longer ours’. Deep down we knew the day we elect them into office that was the last we will hear from them. They will also cease to be ours. Surprisingly, we still had faith and hope that maybe they will be different from their predecessors.

It was a winter of slogans – a season of lies and a harvest of votes! What an eventful campaign era it was! When all is said and done, we will all come back to our senses and face the reality – we will all have to get back with our ordinary lives as a forgotten lot. The winter season is fast past upon us, we now await the Coming of the Dry Season (days of neglect by the politicians) and hopefully we eagerly and patiently wait for the first November Rains. They promise we will enjoy Christmas this year – only time will tell…

We will all miss the jingles and lyrics, ‘As they sang, Ihondo Kuchengeta Vana….Team, Team Ndikusetere team…


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