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Love, hate and xenophobia

16 November 2011, 12:12
The xenophobic attacks facing our country are not actually directed at the colour of the skin or nationality of a person.
They are, the result of socio-economic issues facing the Rainbow Nation. The anger that has surfaced in different parts of the country is what every poverty stricken citizen has been harbouring for many years since our democracy thank-you to Tata Mandela, for the gift of freedom.
Xenophobia is the result of social, economic and political mismanagement by the state. Xenophobia, just like crime, unemployment and housing, manifests itself in different ways.
It is sad that we found our brothers and sisters running for their lives, not wanting even to look back at what they were leaving behind in South Africa.
Zimbabweans and other foreign nationals are flocking to Beit Bridge in their hundreds, with all that they have accomplished and the little material rewards they have acquired in the promised land.
It is sad because we share the same heritage – [a fact] never openly acknowledged by the institutions which [usually make much of] such matters.
[Lobengula was king of the Ndebele, or Matebele people, an ethnic group to which many Zimbabweans belong.]
Whether South African or Zimbabwean, we share a history and ancestry deeply rooted in our cultures and heritage.
Mzantsi citizens should treat each other as brothers and sisters, irrespective which side of the border they belong. All are Africans.
A Nation returning home to settle, not understanding what befitted their king, would be a sad story. A nation that understands its culture and heritage, is made stronger to face up to any challenges lying ahead.
The solution to our plight is to work together and find solutions that can build us and improve the quality of life for our citizens. All that is needed are workable solutions to HIV/Aids, crime, unemployment and lack of housing.
It is through educating our citizens to have respect, dignity and pride that we can move forward. There is nothing that cannot be conquered if we stand together as a united African community.
The culture is in a fragile state and [we need to] teach our children the values of basic humanity. The Isizwe Cultural and Heritage Group doing this by training our youth in skills development and business management.
Sizwe Mda

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