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New year, old struggles

It’s the dawn of a new era, a new year and indeed a new decade. We should all be optimistic about the days ahead, right?

Well I think it’s only fair to be hopeful. After all they say hope is seeing the light in spite of being surrounded by darkness.

There is literally so much darkness in Zimbabwe at the moment but the majority of us are soldering on.

Some, however, feel it’s preferable to go and suffer outside, in countries with better economies than within, where there are no prospects of any meaningful change.

What has made the situation even worse is that we are facing yet another devastating drought.

Traditionally during this time of the year, under normal rainy seasons, people would be cultivating their maize fields.

But this time there is nothing to cultivate as most crops have given in to the extreme heat.

We are already experiencing shortages of our staple food, mealie meal and I shudder to think how the situation will turn out in the coming months.

But as already indicated, some of us choose to remain hopeful that something will give and that we will somehow get out of this situation.

The other challenge though is that the government seems to be taking advantage of people’s resilience as they keep on piling more misery on the masses.

On the second day of the year, the government announced that it had increased public hospitals user fees by more than 100 percent and re-introduced maternity fees.

This is despite the fact that there is really no public health care system to talk about.

And by the way, doctors who went on strike last September are yet to return to work, if ever they will.

As for other problems such as cash shortages, high cost of living and 18-hour load shedding, we have gotten used to them.

We really have normalized our crisis hence being taken for granted by our leaders.

No wonder even our President has told us to forget about meat which is now very expensive and in any case ‘unhealthy’.

When it was put across to him when he met and greeted people in Harare recently that the government should control the price of beef which now costs an average of P110 per kilogramme, the President instead said Zimbos should forget about meat and turn to healthier foods such as cabbages and potatoes.

The man is clearly taking a leaf from his late predecessor, Robert Mugabe who when the country was faced with bread shortages said people were just being cry babies as there were cakes and cookies to be taken with tea.

A clear case of not being serious about dealing with issues at hand!

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