Peaceful Demo: Part Nine…when push came to shove…


WAY, way, down kuHarare South, peaceful marchers on their way to town diverted their route to pass by a police outpost. 

The lucky hosts had been forewarned and had deserted the post ahead of the ‘staff’ visit.

The post was razed to the ground without the loss of a single life.

In the staffroom, at the school where the man whose wife had refused to be touched had left his children, the consensus was that teachers deserved the highest salaries in government because the professors, doctors, ministers and presidents all passed through their hands.

The handsome young teacher whose mother had warned him kuti unoroiwa nevanhu ivava thought kuti the corrupt politician, the foul-mouthed hwindi, the armed robber, the prostitute, the homosexual, maporofita emashura nanatsikamutanda had also passed through the hands of not just the breast-beating teachers with 5 ‘O’-Levels in six sittings but others with 10 ‘O’-Levels in one sitting too.

He remembered his mother’s warning and did not voice his thoughts. He subscribed to the consensus and said: “It is true.”

A small teacher with many teeth bared them all in a knowing smile. She had not missed the compromise. She had 10 ‘O’-Levels in one sitting.

A bigger woman with a massive head changed the subject. 

She said: “Ko ndipeiwoka the number of the person who does your university assignments.”

The middle-aged teacher with 5 ‘O’-Levels in six sittings answered: “Be prepared to pay through your nose. He is now very expensive. You should see the car he is now driving.”

The handsome young teacher who had been warned by his mother kuti unoroiwa nevanhu ivava blurted out: “Saka how do you cope with the exams?”

The older teachers looked at each other and burst out laughing.

An older woman asked: “Do you think this is Singapore?”

A male teacher explained: “Inga wani Esther said it kudhara kuti kamwana aka kanopenga.”

The handsome young teacher and the small teacher with many teeth and 10 ‘O’-Levels in one sitting signalled to each other and left together.

The middle-aged teacher with 5 ‘O’-Levels in six sittings almost rose to follow them. She noticed that the others were watching and, instead, shouted after the young people: “Tendai ndinoda kuzokuona.”

The handsome young teacher who didn’t think that the middle-aged teacher with 5 ‘O’-Levels in six sittings would harm her in the manner his mother feared, pretended not to hear.

The small teacher with many teeth and 10 ‘O’-Levels in one sitting asked her mate kuti: “Why are you ignoring your mhomz?”

The handsome young teacher warned her: “Iwe siyana neni wanzwa.”

Back in the staff room an older male teacher whispered to his mate kuti: “Inga mapudzi anowira kusina hari nhai vakomana.”

Another male teacher to the bigger woman with a massive head: “For my Masters, I am paying US$50 per assignment. And, that is down from US$60 after I had pleaded kuti I am only a poor evil servant.”

The bigger woman was surprised: “Yowe! Yowe! Asi yava project kani?”

Another teacher said: “For the project, my own guy charged US$600. I negotiated it down to US$500. But he is good.”

The bigger woman asked: “What is your project?”

“I don’t have it here. I will remember to bring it tomorrow.”

The deputy head laughed: “You mean to say that you don’t even know what your project is?”

“It is some complicated thing about human rights abuses in Zimbabwe. He chose it for me. I told him I just wanted something that was sure to get me a job in a well-paying NGO.”

In another site of struggle, someone shouted kuti: “They are burning the tuckshops!”

People came out of their shacks running. The tuckshops were already engulfed in a thick smoke surrounded by peaceful marchers, some of whom were helping themselves to some stuff.

Ko vari kupisirei zvinhu zvedu?”

“Are we the enemy?”

A huge woman rushed towards the peaceful destruction.

“Batai amai avo! Vakapinda mumoto havamubudemo ava!”

A small man caught up with her, tripped her and they both fell in a heap on the edge of the scene of arson.

Sympathisers joined to subdue the struggling bulk of energy.

A peaceful marcher shouted an obscenity and added: “Serves you right for refusing to demonstrate.”

The thick smoke exploded into an inferno.The livelihoods of the peaceful vendor community were reduced to ashes without the loss of a single life.

The survivors could only watch, arms akimbo, not knowing pekutangira.

The peaceful marcher who had wanted to beat up the homosexuals had been left confused by the stranger who had stopped him.

He kept thinking about what he had said: “They are the guest stars and the leadership has given specific orders for them not be harmed by our side.… Their special appearance is intended to attract donor funding.”

So, was this what all this hullabaloo was all about?

Donor funding?

To do what?

Denigrating our own values in order to get donor funding?

The man had seemed very knowledgeable and as clear as a spring sky.

But he had disappeared into the violence of the peaceful march … burning cars, burning tyres, burning shops, flying rocks, catapults, fists, tear gas, six-star boots and baton sticks.

He had been looking for him ever since… wanting to keep listening to him.

And then, completely out of the blue, as if by providence, he had found himself running alongside him and they had escaped into the same alley, an alley that turned out to be a dead end and a trap

A recess in the alley hid them and 10 other peaceful marchers from sight.

The peaceful marcher who had wanted to beat up the homosexuals eased up to the stranger who had stopped him.

The stranger acknowledged his presence with a smile.

“Tell me more about what you said earlier on.”

“Oh, the thing about the homosexuals?”


“The issue is far wider than that. It is part of a bigger de-population exercise that includes abortion and birth control among Africans. In colonial Africa, Western colonial powers prided themselves in reducing infant mortality in order to grow the African labour force. In post-independent Africa, the emphasis turned to homosexuality, abortion, birth control, sponsored feminism and civil wars that depopulate the continent to create space for white populations Europe can no longer accommodate. The depopulation also reduces Africa’s capacity to defend itself.”

The peaceful marcher who had wanted to beat up the homosexuals closed his eyes and repeated in a whisper what the knowledgeable stranger had said.

The knowledgeable stranger recognised the cognitive challenge and explained: “Homosexuals do not reproduce. Abortion means killing African babies before they are born. Birth control does not add to the African population. 

Civil wars wipe out whole generations of human potential to develop Africa or defend Africa. All Western sponsorship in Africa comes in these forms. Western governments and non-governmental organisations do not sponsor redistribution of African resources to Africans marginalised by the colonial experience.

“Western governments and non-governmental organisations do not sponsor transfer of land and resources exclusively held by European beneficiaries of the colonisation of Africa.

“Western governments and non-governmental organisations sponsor a minority rights democracy mischievously designed to protect exclusive white minority colonial gains and investments.

“Western governments and non-governmental organisations do not sponsor affirmative action to uplift the status of descendants of Africans enslaved in the Western world.

“Western governments and non-governmental organisations do not sponsor reparations for descendants of African slaves or victims of Western colonisation.”

The fugitives were all ears… all intrigued.

A rough character said: “I think blaaz ava is not one of us. I think he is a Government agent. Munhu weZANU uyu.”

A woman disagreed: “Tell us where you think he has lied.”

Another woman asked: “Do you like homosexuals?”

“Of course, I don’t. But if the leadership says the homosexuals must be part of this demo, who is he to speak against that.”

The stranger made no attempt to defend himself. Neither did he exhibit any fear. A man who wanted to support the rough character accusing the knowledgeable stranger had been watching him closely. He had noticed gnarled knuckles and recognised the predisposition to martial violence. He had abstained from supporting the rough character’s suspicions.

An intrigued young man had said: “This is interesting. Please tell us more.”

The vendors whose livelihoods had been reduced to ashes with not a single loss of life gathered to take stock of the peaceful tragedy after the peaceful marchers had toi-toied off in song and dance.

Some thick smoke in the distance marked the current location of the peace.

The small man who had tripped the huge woman tuck-shop owner to stop her from getting into the fire had sustained injuries of impotence.

The huge woman tuck-shop owner was alive but still insisting kuti they should have let her die because there was no reason to continue living without knowing pekutangira.

Those who had mobbed her included both restrainers and peaceful marchers who did not want to miss the chance to film a huge woman burning herself protesting Government human rights abuse.

The restrainers were now comparing bravery awards that included black eyes, broken teeth, twunyanga pamhanza and colours of blood spatter on their clothing. 

The least talkative became the leader of the caucus. 

He asked: “Saka?”

A woman who had not stopped talking since the fire had abated chipped in: “Handei ku-police. I can identify hobho dzembavha idzodzo.”

A confident young man said: “Inini sekuru brother yamomz vangu muC-Ten. Manje naivavoka mabharanzi ese anoswera aenda pa-tight aya.”

A middle-aged woman said: “Second born yangu inini muPresidential Guard. Kutaura kuno anotofamba naPresident.”

A surprised victim quipped: “Iwe wakura kudaro here mukadzi iwe?”

A man who did not know the mother of the presidential guard vouched: “Ehe. It’s true. I know the young man.’

The mother of the presidential guard noted that she had never seen the witness.

She corrected him: ‘Musikana. He is not a young man.”

The strange witness acknowledged his error and corrected himself: “Sorry. Ndanga ndichida kuti I know the young woman.” 

The mother of the presidential guard smiled her warmth towards him.

The strange witness smiled back. 

The least talkative who had become leader of the caucus collectivised the group’s final position in the words: “Saka handei kupolice.”

“But we have to walk there. No one should risk driving in this environment. Munhu unopisirwa mota ukasara uri pazero.”

There was consensus on the walk and they set out.

A sneaky bald-head hung back … not wanting to stand out.

He sidled-up to an untidy woman and under-toned a discouragement.

A young man they had not noticed behind them shouted: “Madzibaba havasikuda kuenda!”

The confident young man whose mother’s brother was a C-Ten said: “Ngavasare. Don’t you know him!”

Madzibaba replied: “Did I say that?”

Madzibaba had heard kuti the police post had been gutted with not a single loss of life and kept it to himself saying: “Ndingazonzi ndini ndazvitaura.”

He didn’t take up the challenge to desert the walk to report the peaceful marchers.

He said to himself: “Ndingazonzi ndatya.”

At the same time, he hung back saying to himself: “I can’t be seen at the forefront.”

To be continued…


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here