Do you still remember Jimmy? Yes. Well my name is Timmy, and Jimmy is my brother, from another mother. I have never decided to leave the country, but I have decided I do not want to go back.
But first things first.
My name is Timmy, I am a university student (….currently pursuing a Master’s degree). My mother was a ‘vendor’ and that’s how I managed to get registered, and in part pay for my very first degree, at one of Africa’s best universities, actually the Ivy League down here in the Southern Hemisphere. I managed to get myself two degrees from that revered institution. Do I love my country? Am I a patriot? YES! Nothing could be further from the truth.
But things changed, have changed and are changing.
I was lucky enough to be considered for a government scholarship, during the Government of National Unity, which I was subsequently awarded. And so thus I graduated with my first degree, after much wooing and coaxing of my beloved government, who happened to have no funds after selling me expensive dreams. But then again in this knowledge, that there were no funds for the government, I cajoled and coaxed them into paying for my honours year. Was this a mistake or a masterstroke? I will leave you to judge for yourselves dear readers. I can reliably inform you that after completing my honours studies in the year of Our Lord 2013, I will only be receiving this Honours degree, passed with first class, via courier, next week, in the year of Our Lord 2015. I am writing this missive on a coldish and windy Saturday by the way. You see dear readers my beloved government had completely run out of money to educate its citizens, who by the way they always pompously claim to love so very much. The question then was what would become of me? Here I was, armed with only an undergraduate degree, and I wasn’t even the only one. I was doomed, or so I thought, considering that unemployment statistics have not made good reading for both South Africa and Zimbabwe for a while now, in fact the whole of Africa.
Like my brother from another mother Jimmy, I also realized something about our beloved nation and its leaders.
Our fathers and mothers don’t really care about us anymore. They fought in the colonial wars and that was it. They are now only interested in petty politics and self-enrichment whilst forever blaming everything that is anything on the ever-willing sanctions. For the common citizen on the street we have become but just a useful tool for only campaigning and boring to death with speeches which do little to nothing to fill our ever growling tummies. This is what my brother from another mother Jimmy also realized:
“No one cares for the public. We have dirty water in the taps and no one cares. We have erratic supply of electricity and no one cares. The roads are in shambles and no one is doing anything about it. Fuel prices go up and we can’t do anything about it. New taxes are introduced and we can only comply. Internet is very expensive. The public hospitals, the ones which we can afford, provide crappy service and people are dying because the nurses don’t care. I know because I watched my mother in law die at the hands of poor service delivery. And no one cares. Not them, not you, not the minister of health. No one. The company CEOs get treated outside the country now. But what about me? What about my kids?”
Now is that not the truth my fellow countrymen? So yes I have grown comfortable here, and I do not intend to get out of my comfort zone at all, although this makes me wonder. Am I now contributing to the problem of not fixing my country by shying away? Well we can debate this one until donkeys grow horns. But still I am happy here in my comfort zone, and I have decided I will not go back home, although the South African Department of Home Affairs and some disenchanted South African citizens will not agree.
So my countrymen, was it a masterstroke or a mistake that I cajoled and coaxed our beloved government into keeping one of the promises, enshrined in the constitution, to educate its citizenry? Was I selfish when I did this because I knew the financial situation was dire, but you see the MP’s were getting those Ford Everest 4WD’s. Anyway plenty of information is missing in this tale due to time and space, but one day I hope to tell it fully to anyone who would care to listen.
And so once again my name is Timmy, brother from another mother to Jimmy. I am a Zimbabwean citizen and I have decided I do not want to go back home!