There is too much obsession with prosperity, in Zimbabwe. That sounds good, as necessary for solving immediate family problems. But, the more focused on prosperity, humanity becomes, the more susceptible to vanity. Most people are currently languishing in poverty. Yet others question how Zimbabwe can be said to be impoverished when their personally accumulated wealth exceeds those of the developed countries.
Even if prosperity was achievable to most people, today, Zimbabwe would still be doomed. This was the condition with most Zimbabweans in 1980. Immediately, after independence, the previously marginalized blacks got promoted to high-paying jobs. This generated laxity in the thinking pattern of our black people.
The aim was to access riches and live like white settlers. The influx of black people migrating to the low-density areas was very high, in the early eighties. Robert Mugabe’s misrule was manifesting, even at that time, for those who cared to observe. Very few people could appreciate that we were headed for disaster.
Sending one’s children to super-class private schools, whose school fees were exorbitantly incomparable with the services provided, became fashionable. There was competition, based on who manages to send children to Super-class private schools. This included affording big houses in low-density suburbs.
Those unable to send their children to private schools were despised, although their children outperformed those from such private schools. It was probably at that time, that most Zimbabweans lost their dignity. Success was associated with wealth accumulation. Yet true success is described by what one gives to others.
During Ian Smith’s regime, the majority of black town-dwellers lived in high-density areas. The standard of living in those high-density areas was not the same. There were those, observably, with better incomes, driving cars, which the majority could not afford. The rate of criminality was lower than currently stands.
The better-educated ones, living in that environment, were an inspiration to the barely educated in those areas. The good lifestyle of the educated, in the neighborhood, could motivate those desiring to also improve their lifestyles. In other words, people were bonded in strong relationships.
The advent of independence broke that bondage. Relocating to white suburban areas was aimed; so that lavish spending became the norm. I have no qualms with that reasoning. But my concern is stuck on whether such spending was really necessary, where one’s parents in rural areas, still lived in abject poverty.