Role of independence in development and Vision 2030. . . safeguarding our national integrity

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By Shephard Majengeta

SOON the country will be celebrating 44 years of independence.

Independence stands as a cornerstone of a nation’s identity and progress, particularly concerning Zimbabwe’s drive towards Vision 2030, aimed at achieving an upper-middle income economy.

The attainment of independence marked a pivotal moment in Zimbabwe’s history, symbolising the nation’s sovereignty, self-determination and the collective aspirations of its people.

As a people, we must be alive to the significance of independence in fostering development and realising Vision 2030.

We must emphasise the need to safeguard our independence and unify our efforts towards sustainable growth and prosperity.

The essence of independence

Independence encapsulates the freedom to govern one’s affairs without external interference, ensuring the sovereignty and autonomy of a nation.

For Zimbabwe, independence in 1980 heralded a new era of self-rule, ending colonial subjugation and laying the foundation for nation-building.

It granted Zimbabweans the right to determine their destiny, shape their institutions and pursue their developmental aspirations.

Achieving Vision 2030: The link to independence

Vision 2030 represents Zimbabwe’s strategic roadmap towards becoming an upper-middle income economy characterised by sustainable growth, job creation and improved living standards for its citizens.

The attainment of this vision hinges significantly on upholding and harnessing the benefits of independence.

A nation’s ability to chart its economic course, formulate inclusive policies and attract investments is inherently tied to its independence and political

stability.

Protecting our independence a collective responsibility

Sustainable development thrives in cohesive and united societies where citizens share common goals and work collaboratively towards national progress.

To safeguard our independence and advance Vision 2030, it is imperative to foster national unity, promote inclusivity, and mitigate factors that could fragment our social fabric. Unity strengthens our resolve, amplifies our voice on the global stage and bolsters confidence among investors and development partners.

Remembering the sacrifices: Preserving our heritage

The journey towards independence was not without sacrifices.

Many Zimbabweans made tremendous sacrifices, including loss of life, to secure our freedom and create a legacy for future generations. It is incumbent upon us to honour their memory by upholding the values of independence, nurturing a strong national identity and passing on a rich heritage that inspires patriotism and resilience.

Challenges to independence and development

Despite the strides made since independence, Zimbabwe faces multi-faceted challenges that threaten both its independence and development trajectory. These challenges include economic volatility due to the illegal sanctions imposed on the country by the US and its allies protesting the redistribution of land to the landless majority.

The role of leadership and governance

Effective leadership and good governance are pivotal in safeguarding independence, fostering development and achieving Vision 2030. Transparent and accountable governance structures, inclusive policies and strategic planning are essential components for sustainable progress and the Second Republic has provided these in spades. President Emmerson Mnangagwa has emphasised servant leadership which has seen corruption and abuse of office by public servants not tolerated.

Harnessing human capital and innovation

Investing in human capital development, education and skills training is fundamental to unlocking Zimbabwe’s full potential and driving economic diversification and this has happened and is accelerated in the Second Republic. Embracing innovation, technology and entrepreneurship which catalyses growth and enhances competitiveness on the global stage is happening in the country. Empowering the youth, women and marginalised communities for inclusive development and social cohesion is being experienced through various Government programmes and policies.

Building resilient institutions and infrastructure

Strong institutions are the bedrock of a thriving society, ensuring the rule of law, safeguarding human rights and fostering a conducive business environment. Investing in robust infrastructure, including transport networks, energy, healthcare, and digital connectivity, is essential for enhancing productivity, attracting investments and improving the quality of life for all citizens.

Fostering regional and international partnerships

On engaging in constructive regional and international partnerships vital for leveraging resources, sharing best practices and addressing global challenges such as climate change, trade barriers and pandemics has been taken more than a step further in the Second Republic. Collaboration with neighbouring countries, regional blocs and global institutions has enhanced Zimbabwe’s diplomatic standing, promoted trade relations as well as opened up new avenues for investment and development.

This year, we celebrate 44 years of independence. And we should always keep it in mind that independence  is intricately linked to Zimbabwe’s development journey and the realisation of Vision 2030.

Safeguarding our independence requires collective efforts as well as continued visionary leadership like we are experiencing in the Second Republic and a commitment to national unity, inclusivity and sustainable growth.

By honouring the sacrifices of past generations, nurturing our human capital, strengthening institutions and embracing innovation, Zimbabwe is charting a prosperous path towards becoming an upper-middle income economy and fulfilling the aspirations of its people.

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