In Zimbabwe today, parents are encouraged to give the state their cows to secure education for their children, this is another confirmation that President Mugabe is yet again failing to lead his people. One is reminded of an African Proverb which says ‘ If you close your eyes to facts you will learn through accidents’. It looks like economists in Zimbabwe still have their head buried deep in the sand. The Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa once told parliament that people in the informal sector should be able to use their moveable assets such as cows, goats, and other movable assets such as lorries and ploughs, to secure loans. That should have been a sign that the country is entering a slippery slope. Ordinary people in Zimbabwe are living below the poverty line already. They cannot afford to give away such assets which their lives are wholly dependent on. To add insult to injury, a lot of them do not have such assets. But why is President Mugabe and his party not offering free education?
His wife time and time again is accused of living beyond her means, lavish life and exclusive medical attention to the number one family. The worrying thing is that amidst this poverty there are those who continue to defend the family y making statements such as “Robert Mugabe is a freedom fighter”. That is an accurate fact, but to keep using that in the face of all that’s wrong in the country is being manipulative. His is a glorious story
To improve the lives of those who have been disenfranchised, access to education should be free. It is irrational to expect people who were dispossessed and never properly empowered by way of reparation, to suddenly pay for amenities that should lift them out of the poverty cycle. The people of Zimbabwe deserve and should be given free education. They do not have live stoke or any other collateral expected from them by the government. Since the beginning of the economic decline a few years ago, the poor people in Zimbabwe have been playing catch up. The decline in the local currency has caused a migration to neighbouring countries in search for better economic opportunities. It is unthinkable that today their leaders think they own live stock or have valuable movable goods. Perhaps we must remind Minister Chinamasa that due to the collapsed economy, it has become impossible to sustain animal or crop farming. In order for animals to survive they must be fed and taken for medical check up. All these activities require money. Most Zimbabweans live in the rural areas where they practise subsistence farming.
With an unemployment rate as high as 90 per cent, most people operate in the informal sector where they cannot raise loans from banks because they do not have collateral. That surety includes their animals. What then happens to those who do not have animals? Don’t they deserve education as well?
To resolve this problem of a population that cannot pay for the education of their children, the state should provide free education. That is a long-term investment that will yield long lasting results.