I Am Afraid

By Pastor Dudu M. Nyirongo

I know that you are afraid. I am afraid too. Everyone is afraid. I may tell you that I am not afraid but I will be lying. Even Morgan Tsvangirai and Pastor Evan Mawarire are afraid. Zanu PF is a party with blood on their hands and souls since the 1960s. So believe me, everyone is afraid.

Indeed, it is not only Zanu PF that induces fear in us. As Zimbabweans, we have encountered many challenges during the course of our history. Encounters between different tribal groups could be hostile and destructive, inducing fear and trepidation.  Then there was the arrival of colonialists in 1890, boasting of the Maxim gun, which they used to great effect.

The impact was death and displacement among the indigenous communities, but the effects were long – lasting, affecting the mental universe. Forced labour and the deprivation of lands, rights and a way of life all induced serious levels of fear which have persisted through generations. The colonial state was brutal,Today, policemen induce fear, but this began a long time ago – such was the brutality of the forces of authority that seeing a Mujoni during the colonial period was a great source of fear.

We are all afraid. Everyone is afraid, including white people in Zimbabwe.

We have hidden our fear well. Some hide behind the bible and church. Indeed, the church in Zimbabwe has largely encouraged cowardice, telling congregants, especially female members, not to indulge in politics. Some of us simply say, I am not interested in politics, it is a dirty game. White people largely stare and shake their heads after the MDC fiasco and subsequent farm invasions.

However, no one is immune to the obscene levels of corruption and mismanagement in Zimbabwe.

Silence is no longer an option for us.

You may not want to get involved in politics but it is involved with you. Everything about our lives is political. The price of bread is affected by our politics. The type of bread you eat is affected by politics. Our salaries, school fees, building materials, the quality of education, etc, are all affected by politics.

People like Morgan Tsvangirai and Pastor Evan Mawarire, speak regardless of their fear. They just cannot stand it anymore. I speak because I cannot stand it anymore. I speak, regardless of my fear, because I will not allow my daughter to grow up and wonder where I was while the country was reduced to a rubbish dump by callous politicians.

I speak, regardless of my fear, because I have a duty to you my fellow citizen. It is not everyone who is silent. If I remain silent, those few who are speaking become targets of the regime. If we all speak up, the regime cannot target us all. There is safety in numbers.

So yes, I know you are afraid. I am too. All these other people are afraid too. But we cannot be silent any longer. Thus, even as I quake with fear, I shall share my thoughts anywhere and everywhere I can. We must overcome fear, we must conquer fear. God does not abandon His children as long as they are doing right by their fellow brothers and sisters. Even with fear in my voice, I shall still speak. My children, our children, deserve no less. JOIN me. SPEAK. TAURAI. KHULUMANI.

  • Pastor Dudu M. Nyirongo, Mrs, is a mother, a wife, a Pastor, a Chartered Accountant and community leader who has dreams of a better Zimbabwe for all citizens. She is a Founder and Board Member of CitizensZW.