Patriarchy-A Common Attribute Of Our Culture.

#day14 #WinterABC2020 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

The domination of men in all spheres of life and decision making is the essence of patriachy. It is unfortunate that this is not only a community level problem but a national and African problem and a tendency that is amplified by its proximity to our African Culture . It is so well practised and enshrined in the day to day lifestyle that it has become the fabric of our communities yet the purveyor of the inequalities and injustices befalling our women and girls the world over such that although its existence is microscopic its institution has macro effects.

Patriachy has a allowed the perpetuation of a system of subjugation under the guise of culturap respect yet it is the very muffler of women and girls dreams.It emboldens our cultural acceptance of violation and degradation of women and girls , so well thought out and planned in and out of season to such an extent that young girls aged even ten endeavour to pull their labias in the pursuit to ensure they do not suffer the consequences of failing to have the attributes that the system has taught young men to look out for in a future bride. The patriachial system has taught boys to look for the pliable characteristics of a women to its institution creating in young men a confused symbiosis of what a woman should feel and look like by instilling visions of sumptuous breast beckoning to their desires , with buttocks and hips the true analogy of a women leaving our communities with desperate girls and women drinking poisonous concoctions of hip and buttocks enlargement while stripping off the top protective melanin from our dark skins to please the ogling eyes of enslaved African boys with a warped perception of beauty.

When a boisterous untrained, educated female takes the reins then patriachy emboldens the manhood to call her a prostitute and charlatan for demanding a level playing field even in such unalluring professions as politics and academia all the while society looking on , pliable to the tendencies of this heavy load on the earth.

Patriachy emboldens violence and mistreatment of women justifying huge expenditures on defences budgets in the name of fortifying defences systems while it is a way of ensuring its endurance , while amenities such as water systems and infrasture are dilapidated and decimated in the name of satisfying the sprawling empires of sperms scattered everywhere to preserve generational patriachial mobility frowning at women who produce girls at child birth all the while ulogising births of sons as a symbol of manhood-women so well trained to celebrate this naive achievement.

The adjudication that men must make and prelude all the events in the lives of women and girls is not only myopic but suffocating and a disservice to the growth of our communities and nations. The role of community building cannot be left to the self serving nature of men and this has been aptly demonstrated by how well countries run by women have been able to cope with the impacts of Covid -19. It is not to put men and boys at the periphery of decision making but rather to leverage the relationships so that a more balanced view point becomes obtainable. Men and boys are apt to use biology as the stumbling block to the emancipation and growth of the women movement but biology is meant to promulgate the extension of the human territory and prowess rather than as a means of subjugation. It is the combination of the human spirit as represented in male and female that society can advance forward. While others are apt to use biology others have found relevancy in religion and have used the words well articulated in scriptures as a means to imperil the advancement of women but history is full of events of those who used religious manuscripts for evil rather than for good which could not have been the desire of the author of the holy scriptures. Some still have used tradition as a tool to celebrate and deliver bondage to women yet still this is highly unfair but a negation of roles from the early iron age with women helping to hunt and gather.

Our differences as men and women are not meant to divide us neither are they meant as a process for one to run rough-shode over another but rather that we compliment each to grow and cause the human race to multiply and replicate. It will take men of greater intellect and resolution than most in this generation to come to a realization that gender equity is not a misnomer but the standard and that we cannot continue to incalculate these unfavourable tenets within the fabric of our community in the name of accepted cultural norms and values for it eventually becomes an endearing pandemic that will lead to a quick demise of the human population as grown men seek to obliterate the voices of young liberated females calling for a just and equal world while the mysogonist cherish the brutality that is espoused in patriarchy.

Our fall as humans in the present world is much engrained in the failure of systems like patriachy to disengage from normal day to day living with sadly women in our communities so indoctrinated to such a level as to be enablers of patriarchy instilling in future generations the patriachy label that is so difficult to diffuse. The benefeciation of only one aspect of the human race is the center of the lopsided nature of the human life cycle as patriachy is the enabler of unbalanced resource allocation as only the strong and capable are left at the top of the food chain while the vulnerable are left to die. Nature shows a more balanced viewpoint of how the difference in biology can be used to advance a species. When we continue to practice patriachy we will continue to see skewed populations and adverse effects such as the gap between the rich and poor expanding. Those who will flourish are those who have seen the the folly of one sided non inclusive cultural approaches.

When a cohort of women breaks up and sums up the courage to fight the injustice then whole systems are created to destroy the very essence of the struggle with communities lapping up this poison. Whole industries built on the fetishes of patriachial societies. Fights against corruption and social decay target the cornered existence of women taking women to the gallows in the name of witch-hunting and whistle blowing while the tide and wave seemingly curved to miss the machismo. When one of their own fails the patriachial system rushes to protect with cronyism and enablement. Tradition and culture leveraged to take away the rightful heir to the throne in the name of the patriarchial tribe with the young woman cowering at the accusation of wanting to usurp the traditions of the forefathers. The same who ensured never a woman was to break forth through the ranks placed ever so carefully at the peripheral ensure the perpetration of vile practices as asking for a cow to indicate that the girl at marriage was a virgin while by night they come to seek out the services of the same girl. women to. Villages with elongated and higher sits for the man and women sidelined to the African reed mats.

Fathers gone so long to hunt and gather food while women wait patiently for conjugal rights while he exercises his , the shame of journeys to Egoli the place Gold. Patriarchy so etched in our society that whole lockdowns have seen women bearing the brunt of family care while men imbibe on their addictions of varying sorts. The sound of women and girls going to cut grass in the early cold hours in a bush teeming with lions and elephants leave the question begging that what is so special about these particular villages that the men negate grass cutting to women in order for the grass to cover the same roofs the women will experiance patriachy in.

Such is patriachy in our communities , well engrained and flourishing a common cultural attribute.

My Ode to the African President l Wish to Meet.

The African personality l care to meet with is Paul Kagame , the President of the Republic of Rwanda. The Chairperson of the East African Community.

According to his website , he led and commandered from the beginning in 1990, the Rwandan Patriotic Front (RPF), he led the struggle to liberate Rwanda. The RPF halted the Genocide against the Tutsi in 1994.

I am mesmerized by how he has morphed from commanding warfare into the African statement that he is. Looking ever so calmly and well etched in suits he seems to have gone against the tide taken by most African leaders who struggle to rationalize the military man against the statesman. My mind does prodd what drives him to become the unifier of the Rwandan people who suffered an incredible blight on their history-was it the pain he saw and felt or it’s a desire to never have such an event on earth again? If he can feel this way why is it difficult for fellow African leaders to follow suit ? Many an African population have placed their lives in the hands of former guerrilla fighters and have been aptly disappointed , but, not Rwanda. Warfare alwayd remains the default strategy of most African heads of government becoming despots to their dying days. Rwanda though is flourishing in the hands of President Paul. I always look forward to something he has to say because it is always refreshing and well constructed with no gaffes like we have become so used to on our Continent.

I would want to ask him whether world leaders know that there is a day of death? I believe he would be the man to give a fair honest answer.

My passion is for young women empowerment . l would therefore have an opportunity to applaud his reformist attitude in the Organisation of African Union and say how in awe l am of how he is turning technology to benefit his people especially the girl child. l sometimes think how it would feel like if the thousands of the tech savvy young people in Zimbabwe were so empowered and given support and leverage as the current crop of young people in Rwanda, what would become of Zimbabwe.If Zimbabwe can produce Strive Masiyiwa in this dark room how about when all the lights are turned-on such as in Rwanda.It is not that l regret being Zimbabwean but far from it l just wonder what it could be like to be energized, supported and believed as a young person and not used for political patronage. A lot of young people must feel this way across the continent.Sadly our years of being young and viral are leaving us and we are faced with the stark observation that not only are our dreams withering but that the dreams of our little children are evaporating right in front of our eyes as we etch out a survival not for relevancy but for stomachs just to be filled while we watch leaders in power across Africa gather riches they will not use in their lifetime. l am encouraged by how Rwanda escaped its past as they managed to emerge strong from its ashes ably led by President Paul Kagame.

I would want to ask him if our leaders ever chit-chat with each other outside of diplomatic niceties and if he ever gives advice or it is each to his own.It must be each to his own else how do we justify the plunder and political failure in most African countries. How can so many of our African leaders miss the mark selling our birth rights and resources to concession seekers and allowing once again the colonization of the African people to fortune seekers who care not for the future African generations ?

Rwadan people will leave an indelible mark not only on the continent going forward but the world over because of Paul Kagame.History mr President will be kind to you.

May your flame awaken on the African continent peace and reconciliation, women’s empowerment, promotion of investment and entrepreneurship, and access to information technology, all causes you champion as Co-Chair of the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development. In you , as Africa we are led.

In the Kings Kraal

#Day12 #WinterABC2020 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

Wild was the applause and ululation as the head Kingpraiser ulogised upon the second Ndebele king , the poet danced up and down as he chanted and danced belly protruding forth –

Gee! ee ! yebo Nkosi !

The one who grew up in the Amashlogoshlogo regiment , Inyoniyamashlanga,

Son of Mzilikazi ,

King of Bulawayo,

You who were meant to be killed but not killed , Bayethe!

Bayethe Nkosi yamaNdebele

Umthwakazi wabantu

The son of the Nguni

Proud Matebele

Bayethe!

The King watched proudly imbibing on his traditional brew surrounded by all his queens, because , today was a day of celebrations as the Kings envoys Babayane and Mshete had returned from seeing Queen Victoria together with Edward Maund and had brought thrilling stories of the grandeur they had seen and the might of the British. The might of the British on his side was a prospect the king salivated on. Levereged well,he would use this growing relationship to his best interest he mused to himself.

I went about dutifully serving beer and food with the rest of the women called upon to perform such duties in the Kings kraal-a nameless face hardly recognizable to the indunas in the Kings Kraal, as they continually called for more of the tasty brew and chewy venison with the dripping fatty pieces of meat from our handsome cattle.

Ours was a proud nation and well endowed with majestic tracts of land feeding thousands upon thousands of cattle obtained from our finesse and brutalness in the art of war , having continued the lessons indoctrinated in us by the forebearers of our proud Ndebele Heritage as descendants of Mzilikazi and all those who had come before us. In our quest to flourish and ensure our armies were replenished and satisfied we had managed to take all the lands within Matebeleland and had vanquished the occupants of Mashonaland scattering them into small states that had to become our allies if they wanted to survive. It was after all a time of war and survival -we took the best of the cattle , land and all the natural resources ensuring we scalped the better looking women as trophies to integrate within our own tribe . We women were round and verbose with very feminine structures but the woman from other tribes were taller and generally less round but our men liked the fact that there were strong and mixed with our Ndebele blood could create more soldiers in our quest for more.

Usually when we were in war we would annihilate our enemies with our superior art of war passed down from our forefathers the Zulu , after all my father had run away and come to settle here in Matebeleland and come with the skills of the Zulu. The occupants of the land had never seen anything like our men. Large men with thighs and feet so big they would make a sound as they ran to vanquish the enemy with our well fashioned spears. We had conquered quickly and swiftly and the Shonas resented this -l am sure their offspring would resent us forever, because we would kill their best warriors in war , and take all plunder and the weak would cower in fear choosing to live a life of homage to us. Really one must put all this into perspective instead of imagining us just brutal -there was no other way , it was either us or them.

War was the language of the times. So our kingdom criss- crossed all the way from Matebeleland upto Mashonaland. As a king , uLobengula did have a taste for the ecclectic and loved novel items but he did thirst for more power and more occupation and needed to consolidate what he had achieved. The men without knees had been trickling in and out trading offcourse in different wares but it had been mostly the Boers . Greedy offcourse for our natural resources but not respecting our boundaries so dealing with them was a bother. It is offcourse the Boers who had led our ancestors this way telling Mzilikazi of beautiful plains and so we had found them.

The Boers did have shifty eyes so Lobengula was not keen on trading with them but there were better at war than the British but the British had strong fire power. A few had come to preach a new type of superstition that they were calling the gospel.With what they talked about my king who being a proper Ndebele men believed in life even after the grave had taken to give time to these men of the cloth. They spoke very well these men , and seemed in awe of their God and would contribute to his ultimate downfall. One such man was called Charles Helm and he actually had become an eloquent Ndebele speaker. But we had our own African gods so it took time for the king to be pliable to accept their God. The king had his reason to bring these men close-Guns. My dear king being the man of war he was , wanted guns these men could help him secure-to secure his kingdom and his people. Well he thought, having more of these men of the cloth would do no harm. Sometimes they had other company which fancied Ndebele women ,their eyes gave them away as we saw how they looked at us as we served them food and beer looking at our dangling breasts with their giddy greedy little white eyes mesmerised by our exposed breast and only a small animal hide covering our behinds. l had never been called to these encounters but those who came from these encounters laughed at the encounters saying that the men hardly carried any weaponry in respect of their sexual prowess and it was said they soon became tired unlike our Induna warriors who could continue into the early morning until their backs glistened of black sweat.I did not wish to be called for such an encounter because the very thought of a pale white body did scare me -after all my superstitions made the bedrock of my life as a Ndebele women.

This particular season the trips by the white men had become so many-whispers among the indunas said the king was now getting tired of the many request by the white men who frequented his king’s kral. They had been endles envoys seeking favourable terms of trade with the Matebeleland kingdom and our forays into the kral to help with serving the guest had become all too frequent. The Indunas were themselves not settleted worried that the king was too in awe of the guns peddled by the men with no knees.

These envoys sought what the Indunas termed concessions-rights to certain items in the kingdom. The other white men who had come in the past were from Transvaal with no manners at all wanting the king to give away our lands. The Indunas said the king had become drained by the incessant calls by the envoys into his kral and that he needed to protect his kingdom for a price that did not include land rights. He envisaged that if he could enter into an agreement with one party the rest would back off while he would have secured the security of his people and territories in Mashonaland.

The king had finally decided to listen to the entreaties of the men of the cloth and the other white men he knew, to give , concession to the British. For he thought it was a fair deal to give away mineral rights and in return recieve British Protection and a thousand guns. For the British it was the pretext to enter into the territories run by Lobengula and his people.

I will not forget when the envoy of Charles Dunell Rudd, Rochfort Maguire and Francis Robert ‘Matabele’ Thompson arrived in the Kings kraal to partake of a certain ceremony. Every one was joyful but a few years later as we said goodbye to our queens and king as he disappeared into the dark of the night we realised we had been sold a dummy and history has not recorded us kindly but even today l have heard my great great grandchildren still cry about the marauding foreigners seeking to recieve concessions in the pretext of kindness.Children beware.

The Bedrock Of Africanism-Our Proverbs.

#day11 #WinterABC2020 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

I am of Sotho origin from Matebeleland South in Zimbabwe with a Ndebele mother, raised in a predominately Shona environment in Mashonaland , who learnt Shona in primary school and now lives among the Nambiya , Batonga and Lozwi in Matebeleland North and , so , to do my Zimbabwean proverbs in one vernacular would be an injustice although l lean easily on the language l learnt in school.My children are born from a Zezuru father who comes from Uzumba in Mashonaland East , to a Sotho mother and we are living among the Nambiya and Batonga in Matebeleland North while she is learning Ndebele in school- it’s all so ironic. So when l ask my daughter who is nine for her proverbs she tells me in Ndebele yet she is Shona and my husband tells me his in Shona and l know mine both in Shona and Ndebele, l decided to do a direct translation of five Zimbabwean proverbs straight into English, however , because it is a direct translation it comes across as a good movie with poor subtitles .

Zimbabwean proverbs cut across all our cultures and represent our journey as bantu people and are mostly seen as warnings to those about to fall into traps. Concieved by expermustiance and the journey of time they take after our African culture of not speaking directly so as to avoid the consternation of ‘ l told you so ‘ and to avoid to be seen to be wishing ill on others when giving advice in good faith.

My first proverb is ‘ Goat eating tree leaves , it is like mother ‘ basically put it is to say that a fruit does not fall too far away from the tree.A child takes the habits and mannerisms of parents.One must never be surprised at a young goat eating the leaves of the mufenje tree because the mother also eats the same tree leaves-the child has grown and seen the mother eating leaves and assumed the same nature. Unfortunately it is seldom used in a good way but rather to express dismay at a child taking after the mother and the father in particular the mother who might have a bad habit of stealing or straying eyes.

My second proverb is’
Big Baboon fold your tail so the little ones can fear you.’ This is a call to grown ups to behave in a manner worthy of respect.It calls out for adults to give young people space so that the same young people can afford the elders a platform rather than playing tango and fighting for space with the young . Unfortunately this proverb seems to fall on dead ears nowadays in Africa, as old people seek to hold on to resources and opportunities without affording young people a platform and when the young people retaliate when they get an opportunity then the same will cry ‘ mavara angu azara ivhu’ an African idiom by a cheetah which means to say they have ruined my marks by covering me in dirt.

My next proverb is ‘Wasp fold yourself in one place the flowers of the earth do not end.’ It is speaking to that particular stage in life when one always seems to be attracted to different partners seeking different adventures like a wasp looking for nectar in the different wild flowers attracted by the diverse colors only to not realise that flowers will always be there and one will not be able to finish all of the flowers in the wild.Mostly used to admonish young men to find solace and permanency in one young lady because there is a peril in searching for young beautiful flowers at every turn the flowers representing beautiful or handsome prospects.

In an endeavor to encourage team work our elders produced the proverb ‘One must smell their own armpits’. One would need to check one self before hoping to involve themselves in others people’s business.The scenario being that usually there is a proverbial smell in all of us that we carry.Clearly not conceived with perfumes in mind.

My final proverb is ‘ leave well where you are from , travels are engulfed with darkness’ . This is a call to ensure that whenever one leaves a place it is always a good thing to leave in peace and in good standing with the dwellers there because it is never a guarantee it shall go well with you where you are going and as such you might need to return or need a referral.

I love these Zimbabwean proverbs and hope you find hope , solace and advice in them as we do in our own lives.

Master Of The Generic.

#day10 #WinterABC2020

The diabolical dilemma is that l am a marketer who does not believe in brands.Its a paradox l cannot seem to reconcile hence my consternation at writing this particular subject for the winter challenge and in the process derailing my ambition to keep up to date with this winter goal. l like true authentic scenarios and my gut feeling seems to suggest that brands are overrated. I call it flossing for the cameras.

My experience is that when we become brand loyal we become entwined in deception – a pretentious climb into a fake utopia that only makes our fall all that much more spectacular when we discover that the brands we craved for have turned out to be an illusion -How our view point of our favourite stars has dwindled because they could not eulogize with us the mattering of lives black. We became disillusioned because we fell in love with the brand and not the generic humans and cannot accept the default picture we see.We made them superstars when there were just like us -humans.

I chose therefore to become master of the generic. l want applications and remedies that work- the rest of the package is meant to scoop the top dollar. Branding is about imagery , persuading the mind to having an alternative view – creating a new perception of a non existent world . I should know about changing perspective- afterall l am an artist. My baobab trees are simple pen strokes in different shapes creating the illusion of a tree until the tree starts looking like a tree. Fake it until you make it- religious leader once said.You hype up the product and service so well it starts looking good in the name of branding.

The generic though stands tall and proud. There is no better understanding of the generic more than the medicines churned out by big pharma. The typical medicines we peddle and foist down our throats are mostly creations of our own generic African medicines that were hoisted off from our own bushes and given away for a few cents by some bureaucrat-only to have them come back to us in diluted perfumed form. So my trip to the pharmacy , if l must ( after l have tried my own herbal remedies) is asking for the best of a product (the brand) and asking for an effective form that does the same job but costs less ( the generic)- that same formula l use in everything. Read the fine print at the back of a branded product and look for the most competitive alternative. The generic has no fanfare to it. No extras , it is what it is. l like to think of myself that way too . Very generic-l stay true to myself. I only ever keep my short African hair or my locks. Those two options since my early teen years -my mother will say it was eczema that made me have that choice only, others swayed by the illusion of westernization will say a little demon is lurking there-come on!

You see , the problem l have with brands is that what you see is not what you get rather what you see is what you want to see. I always say that as long you have not met a marketing person in person you are okey-meet them one on one my friend- you will be sold hook-line and sinker, because you will be sold illusions of grandeur and splendour that will make you spend more than you ought to -ask those saddled with credit card debt chasing illusive brands made to work like drugs.The moment you drink from that cup you will no longer be able to drink from any other cup. The road will become saddled with keeping up appearances and waiting for the next better version. Brands will the peril of most.

I will occasionally use a few brands but my life certainly will not revolve around brands. Brands become too big and become a law unto themselves and then forget why they started in the first place. They become a facade -an idea and no longer a product . Its not that you are lied to, no-far from it. The selective part of the mind will only hear and see what it wants to. So the brand l care to peddle and represent is- good old me.The best brand in the world that l care to work for is the one that comes out when we press the default button-which is all of us in our generic form with all of our flaws and humanity. l love to see the authentic unbridled form that is not genetically modified. Brands are genetic modifications of a false reality and so unfortunately l remain unsold on the life of brands-maybe a victim of my trade but also a brutal assessment of the same.l will remain master of the generic and peddler of no brand.

Four Social Media Accounts l Am ln Love With.

#Day9 #WinterABC2020 #afrobloggers

I am a passionate creative artist so my passions are not shades of grey rather there are very black or white. When l like something l love it or simply loathe it. l unashamedly love the multi- faceted kubatana site http://kubatana.net/ A popular Zimbabwean site with the following social media handles http://www.twitter.com/Kubatana and http://www.facebook.com/Kubatana l love Kubatana not neccesarily because they have published a few of my pieces but because it is a groovy place- a mixed bag of bourgeois academic articles and common men everyday struggles bringing a human face to our work and struggle as development practitioners in Zimbabwe and bringing the voice of ordinary citizens to the fore. Kubatana.net just has a way of making difficult topics mundane and normal breaking down complex bill’s and amendments which seem to be always a constant in our country. They know how to infuse art in their content creation , super friendly and always on time every minute with content from Zimbabwe , Africa and taking well placed pieces from reputable sites right on to our doorsteps. If you want to catch up on everything happening in Zimbabwe then visit Kubatana.net. Kubatana is a shona word that means to be united or to be together.

On the international front l keep upto date using https://www.politico.com/. I find their articles and content refreshing and offering hindsights on many facets of the world political space. Not afraid to tackle hard questions on race injustices ,and the world political terrain , the site speaks for itself.

Back home https://www.techzim.co.zw/ popularly know as Techzim is a reliable source of information on technology , digital information and reform and l love that they always look at the impact of technology on social and economic issues and are not afraid to call a spade a spade.

Finally what would my life be without https://bustop.tv/ popularly known as BustopTV offcourse these guys are funny but they use creativity to change the narrative and offer hope to thousands of young people in Zimbabwe. A creative online TV channel that produces news, skits and documentaries using comedians.I follow most of their social handles.If you want to see an unpretentious representation of real Zimbabwe then BustopTV is the go to place.

Self Reflections On Content Creation.

#Day8 #contentcreation #WinterABC2020 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

My content creation is a work in progress.As an African creating content l thought it best to not throw the stone to far away from me and focus on self.l reflection of those mistakes l ought to avoid.My writing enthusiasm came from my experience in writing biblical sermons for both my Associate and Bachelor’s Degrees in Biblical studies.You had to churn out close to Eight good Sermons on paper per week.

It was a hard analysis of each book and chapter from the bible-however it was upto you the individual to give title to each write up.

Coming up with titles was always the hardest.When do you come up with a title-after or before the write-up? In creating content for my sites l always struggle with the title and l find myself grappling with fancy titles.My critics who are my young sister and husband say my titles are never straight forward.They meander like a snake or river.l hope in future to avoid meandering titles and come up with more direct titles for any content l create.

My content does provide a glimpse of the pictures and scenarios l hope to paint but could do more towards unpacking solutions.l hope in future to profer more solutions to the problems l write out.

My primary critics point out to the fact that my post are usually on the long side-most of the times.Well, l do hope to write less arduous post with less ramblings in the future and this post is a start -see- its straight forward and short.A good start.

MY VOICES FROM ZIMBABWE.

#WinterABC2020 #day7 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

Zimbabwe has countless writers and bloggers whose pieces always give me copious amounts of reflections. The works consist of a myriad of different subjects ranging from analysis of our Socio Micro and Macro conditions to inspiration about Art and Culture and sometimes good old fashioned opinion pieces.

I love the work by these masters because it is always so meticulously thought out following persuasive threads that carry me along to the intended purposes and always leave me breathless . Some of the pieces are totally unapologetic and unassuming with writing machismo and amazonian attributes flowing through the intricate patterns of writing , some plain nostalgic reflection on long gone by eras that illicit beautiful memories in my soul. Some are brutal analysis of a system in decay prophesying of an apocalyptic harsh reality that some times our minds as Zimbabweans cannot fathom and begin to comprehand. Some are just timeous reports on the ongoing daily grind that is life. Such are the feelings l encounter when l read the works of Alex T Magaisa bigsr.co.uk in his Big Saturday Read (BSR) every Saturday and Thandekile Moyo in her pieces for the Daily Maverick and other publications and Larry kwirirayi in Three Men on a Boat ( 3-Mob.com).

The one person though who made me think about seriously putting my thoughts in a blog is Tinatswe Mhaka of the Black Legal Narrative when l met her at a workshop , speaking passionately about her work as a legal fundi in trying to speak about issues pertaining to young women from both a feminist position and a legal perspective. She spoke so fondly of her blogging experience that l was catapulted into that world instantly. When l met Mbizo Chirasha at the invitation of our Arts organisation to help teach rural girls to use poetry as a tool for learning his understanding of social media and how to use it for social justice impressed me. l like his work that he showcases under (MIOMBOPUBLISHING.COM) and in his manifold sites with his unrelenting push for poetic justice and short stories resonating with the ambience of African life. Not only is he a passionate writer but a prolific spoken word smith with his booming voice and beautiful character matching this discourse.

All these writers in my world are passionate, unrelenting, purposeful and beautifully imaginative and represent my country well in the fight for a more just and equitable world and their works deserve to be read and reread. l think that in our life time we might not truly understand their value and place in our history only for future generations to peruse and ruminate on their every word and wonder if we knew how beautiful gifts to the literary world there were but such is our dilemma as Zimbabweans ,we want to celebrate our heroes when there are long gone. l however choose to celebrate this literary genuineness now , able to bring out written fonder day-in and day out , week one-week out. You are scribes exhibiting constant excellence and my writing heroes and heroines.

The Tentacles of Social Media.

#WinterABC2020 #day6 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

If social media has taught me anything it is that l was born during the wrong era.l work with pre-teenage and teenage girls in rural areas and l always tell them that l would have loved to be teenager in this opportune time because studying and reading would have been so easy.In our time we had to carry truckloads of books in our backpacks that are probably now the cause of my the back aches that as l become older. We had to visit the library almost everyday gobbling vast tracts of information stored up in these books.

l literally read all the encyclopedias in the school library-l loved reading in the library and that’s how l developed a steadfast culture of reading.I was not very selective of the titles , at that time one could read Nancy Drew , the Hardy Boys and jump straight to the Mills and Boon series ( the later was not found in school libraries of course) in between reading that scary book on all the tropical diseases found in Africa. If you think Nollywood is exciting it is because you never read the Pace-Setters books coming out of Nigeria.Every parent had to buy the Student Companion.Now young people just have to be part of social media groups and understand how to use the internet and then information just oozes out of the media apps to such an extent that there is even now disinformation- it is just not fair .However for this l am grateful because l do not struggle with attention deficit as so many of the young people nowadays struggle with because of the side effects of social media is a failure to concentrate on one thing for more than thirty minutes.

It is amazing what our young people can do because of social media.l only learnt how to use a computer when l was starting to work in my early twenties and only through a crush course l had to beg for from my young sister after l had inadvertently told the interviewer that l could use a computer when l could not ( and you know how young sisters are like). My nine year old daughter also knows things about computers and social media l could possibly only dream that l still struggle with and my 5 year old twin boys already know how to use everyone’s smartphone . Social media has thus taught me that l was born in the wrong era and for good cause l wouldn’t have gone to school -why would l need to go to school with the tutorials of everything on youtube. Hopefully my children do not read this because l do want them to not go to school, because if there is another lesson that social media has taught me it is that human bonds and connection are important.

You can have many friends on all the social media platforms but the ones that truly count are the ones whom you can whisper to and touch in your moments of happiness and despair. Social media can be flattering yet a facade and sometimes we ruin our very good relationships when we twerk at our keyboards following the latest tweets and posts while ignoring our partners and family in the same room because we become so fixated on our screens.

Social media has taught me that as a marketing person the field has not changed but rather that it is the medium that has changed. The principles of marketing as espoused by the gurus of marketing remain the same. Social media is the new ‘place’ everything else is still marketing. So for now my profession is still safe but l worry about artificial intelligence ‘AI’ -we won’t be needed soon l say- but for now make hay while the sun shines.

The last lesson is a lesson l teach young people- do not post pictures of yourself in compromising positions on social media. Social media does not forget quickly. Once it’s out there it’s out there in the clouds never to be deleted.Do not say l never told you so!

PERSPECTIVE ON HOW TO DISMANTLE POVERTY ENTRENCHED IN THE LIVES OF RURAL GIRLS.

#WinterABC2020 #day5 #afrobloggerswinterchallenge

The phenomenon of poverty once set creates a momentum that perpetuates itself like a well tooled industry complete with resources that ensure that it never dies but rather thrives.It is so deeply entrenched that only a deliberate injunction can dismantle its shackles. The momentum is the cycle and like the symbol of marriage it is a ring that has no qualified entry point and those who seek to dismantle its power must find a tenacious willingness not privy to common tactics and stategies. As a Social Entrepreneur l have observed commonalities in rural poverty amongst girls and women across the spectrum that needs systematic dismantling and without such an approach it becomes difficult to unhinge. In this particular narrative l do not seek to dwell on the nature of the poverty circle but rather on how to dismantle the structures.

I use the word structures here because poverty is an institution built by years of being and one should never assume to want to dismantle it by piecemeal strategies -it also needs an attack on its pillars. My assertion is that rural poverty in the life of girls is perpetuated by patriarchy-the dominance of decision making and resource allocation by men and boys for men and boys. Girls and women neither have the power or resources to break the chains of poverty and ironically the only way to truly break the cycle is to find power from those who seem to perpetuate its hold. Imagine asking for space at the decision making table from those at the table who do not wish to create the space-that is patriarchy.

The one attribute of patriarchy is that it is perpetuated by a class whose education base is very limited and l say this not in an unkind manner but to delineate those who are enablers of patriarchy but also complicit in its use. The one way thus of fighting this patriarchy hence fighting poverty is to educate the girl child both academically and metaphorically. Dollars and resources must be poured in vast amounts in the life of girls ensuring a robust transition from an early age by changing the narrative right at birth. The offence that society in this case men felt at the Beijing Conference was not that women were demanding an equal share at the decision making table but also that they could dare question the status core. How dare women do that ? Question their very place ? Education and its benefits thereof creates the ability in women and girls to question the status quo.It creates the foundation for knowledge building and the narrative can begin to change as women and girls begin to know their rights.

The maternal nature of women and girls make this population the best candidates for inserting a human rights based approach to decision making. One only has to see the disasters that came out from governments dominated by men only on the podium. The more the number of men gathered around the table the higher the body bags at the morgues. Here men must read carefully-no one is saying do not be at the decision making apex but rather share the burden. One of the reasons menstruation hygiene is still a challenge in rural areas is simply that it is limited to the biology of women and girls. Even still the high mortality rate of pregnant women and girls in the service of child bearing is also because it is very much a biological problem befalling women and girls-had the tables been turned with men and boys oozing quantifiable liquid from their manhood we would see a revolution to period poverty. If only men and boys could carry their offspring in their bellies and not in their loins surely the high mortality rate at child bearing in rural communities would be next to zero but alas it is not to be.

Patriachy must be thus dismantled by education so as to ensure the chains of poverty are broken.Patriachy encourages violence and fosters it creating the conditions for it to breath. You are beaten out of your wits by your own brother , father or partner and when you stomach enough courage to report you are confronted by a men manning the post using rules and regulations established by men with pot bellies and should you somehow manage to have your issue to the courts are faced by a judiciary frothing with patriarchy.

I put it to you therefore that if there is a chance of dismantling poverty in the life of rural girls it is must be centered first on dismantling patriachy by investing in the education of the rural girl child.

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