THE meaning of the unity so often called for by President Emmerson Mnangagwa can’t be more succinctly brought to the fore than the coming together of the nation as we rally round the Warriors as they battle Pharaohs in Egypt tonight.
True, during the match, there will be ups and downs.
At times, the Warriors might miss scoring chances, lose possession in dangerous areas, commit unnecessary fouls or even concede easy goals.
But the nation will stick with their team, expecting it to achieve the desired results at the end of 90 minutes.
The national common cause is to see the Warriors succeed in Egypt.
It is this national cause which will see rival fans, be they from Platinum Stars, CAPS United, Dynamos, Highlanders, Yadah or even Manica Diamonds all united in their desire for success.
Naturally, some people’s favourites were not selected into the national team.
Conversely, there were some dark horses that found their way into the Warriors.
But this doesn’t matter as the accepted criteria for selection was entrusted in the hands of the national coach.
Just as in a general election, the accepted criteria for selection of the winning candidates is left to the voters.
Under normal circumstances, as with our own present Warriors, the implicit collective obligation is to respect the selection verdict.
That is what was expected even after our last general elections.
After all, the collective aim of all the individuals, in the case of the Warriors, is to see them win and in the case of general elections to see the new Government succeed.
That’s the hallmark of maturity.
What is critical is that both the national team and the Government are for Zimbabweans.
Success will be shared by all Zimbabweans and not necessarily only by those whose favourites got team places or only those whose party won the general elections.
The language of ‘kudira jecha’ is completely out of place.
In the same way, that is why we saw people from different social strata generously respond to the call to raise cash for the Warriors at the fundraising dinner in Harare recently.
Unity took precedence over any misgivings one had about the team.
Thus as the Zimbabwean flag is raised and the national anthem is being played just before kick-off tonight, one message should be firmly imprinted on the hearts of the Warriors.
They are the ambassadors of a whole nation held breathless as the game proceeds.
Let them score a goal ahead of the Pharaohs for them to see how solidly the nation is behind them.
There will be ups and downs during the course of the game, but people back home know the ultimate objective of their team.
This is what we are witnessing as the Government battles to pave the way for an upper middle-income economy by 2030.
Just as we are united to see our team succeed, the same spirit should be the binding ethos of our peace-loving nation.
What is critical is that all this is for Zimbabweans.
Success will be for all Zimbabweans and not exclusively for those whose favourites got team places or those whose political party won the elections.
The adage ‘divided we fall, united we stand’, should be taken seriously.
We wish our Warriors the best of luck.