Saturday, January 3, 2015

Open Letter to the Zimbabwean Government from a bruised, battered and torn woman

2015 arrived three days ago. A whole new year. Its supposed to be a new beginning right? But as a woman and as a citizen of Zimbabwe I ask myself is there anything new about 2015, especially for us the low class? Is there even a beginning to talk about?

When the new year arrived we were in foreign lands as is "new
common scenario for zimbas" and we saw the privileged ones lighting up the
skies with fire works like the one shown in the picture. For them it was thrill but for us all we watched was an explosion of woes, unheeded cries, of untold stories of suffering and unsung heroines holding their own. It was a reminder of our jumping from the frying pan into the fire for 2015 is starting on a none different note to the ending of 2014. So those lights as they lit the skies in blessed lands, instead of being bright and cheering to us they were blinding and painful in our eyes for we have nothing to celebrate.

If you are wondering what is it that I am going on and on about let me just remind you of the things that us the poor women go through. We are graduating from our highly esteemed universities and colleges in order to cross borders into neighbouring countries where we end up working rese rese (loosely translated this means any menial jobs).

In these countries where we are going in droves we are seldom treated with dignity, we get raped by our domestic work employers, we get mugged and jeered on in public transport especially in South Africa you know how xenophobic they got when they accused us of taking their jobs. And yes indeed we where taking their jobs, but not because we were that much good than them oh no, because we are a cheap labour whose rights can be trampled on and we will still wake up the following day and heave our weary bodies back to the same hellhole. In these so called greener pastures we endure a general contempt that people look at us for being Zimbabweans, the poor ones, the hungry ones whose country is accused of crimes against its own people.

In trying to feed our families we have transcended borders and sea and oceans. There we where we go we meet people who have never left their countries by choice because their lives are good. If given the same choice most of us would rather be home with our families we would rather be in the comfort and security of our own borders , our own food, our own language, in our own land. But, sirs and madams, our country continues to drive us away because the jobs are way too few for us and some jobs are a preserve for the well connected but, us the trodden women, know no one. We dont have connections all we have are our nursing diplomas, our degrees, our certificates and no connections. Ther is no job market for us.

Our generation has lost the freedom of choice to be in true love. We are falling for a viable love instead, a financially secure arrangement disguised as love. We are ending up with those men who are able to look after us but are also wife/spouse batterers, have a long list of other women like us earning a life from them, we get deliberately infected with HIV but we cant seek justice. Because justice comes with an empty stomach and no place to live. Not to mention social ridicule. We wish the legal system and social welfare system could find a holistic balance. We wish there were more opportunities for us to be self sustainable.

We are pleading with you that in 2015 may there be politics with a purpose. We read in the papers that big wigs whatever that means and for lack of a better word are the ones who keep getting big. we hear of women being harassed in parliament and in government, we read of political interests rather than peoples interests. And as women all this worries us and torments our souls. All this increases our woes. All this means the burden of toiling to feed our families gets only harder and bigger. We are on our own. We wish someone could heed our cries, that someone could actually spare a thought for us. We have become a forgotten specie.

Edinah Masanga
On behalf of all women like me. Women who toil and struggle everyday and women who must not only get justice but must be remembered by our government in Zimbabwe

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