2020 Movers & Shakers


By Black Edward


BLACK Lives Matter. I don’t know how many times we’ve read these three words just this year alone. And there’s no doubt that we will continue to hear them for a long time to come. Of course they need to be shouted much louder to sink in.

Hats off to Black Lives Matter — a movement which supports non-violent civil disobedience in protest against incidents of rising police brutality and racially motivated violence against blacks mainly in the United States and Britain.

However, here in Zimbabwe we urgently need a movement that advocates effective leadership, identifies and nurtures talent — an initiative that captures and broadens the concept of Zimbabwe Leadership Matters.

Look, a lot has been said about maladministration and half-baked policies across all sectors in our country. In fact proof of this incompetence is everywhere, just look around you. Despite threats to expose incompetent leaders, nothing concrete has ever been done. But hey; we also need to protect hard workers — motivate them so that they always perform to their prime potential. Yes, they need to keep doing what they are doing right or even do it better and those who are not up to scratch need to know why and where they are lacking.

We can start by compiling this year’s list of just 20 Zimbabwe’s most influential leaders in a bid to bolster them. We can call it Black something, something… The word “Black” borrowed from Black Lives Matter, not from my name (chuckle). Gosh, I can’t think of an appropriate name offhand with the word Black. Can you? Well, maybe 2020 Movers & Shakers can suffice for now. It should be a movement, which knows no minimum/maximum age, gender, race, tribe or qualifications but focuses on solid achievements.

The 2020 Movers & Shakers list should comprise Zimbabweans we consider as jewels that withstood the 2020 test and the vicissitudes of a melting economy.

The 2020 Movers & Shakers shouldn’t be just about power or possessions. Nor should it be a collection of deadwood politicians.

We should think about candidates with stunning 2020 achievements.

Do you have anyone in mind? Before you can answer this question let’s agree that candidates should have displayed some or all of the following qualities:

l Those aspiring to be on the list should prove how their actions made a positive impact on the lives of ordinary people.

l They should have shown a true desire to assist others to prosper, with an optimistic view and an inner drive. We’re talking of leaders who rolled up their sleeves, got into the trenches with others and had their hands dirty as they helped out.

l They should have led by example — worked hard, showed professional integrity, and displayed a can-do attitude.

l They should have been involved in community work — expanded their knowledge and also helped others and at the same time developed empathy.

l Our choices should be of leaders who had a stake in people’s welfare.

l They should have demonstrated the same actions and values they expected from others.

l Also, they should have communicated effectively with ordinary people, were able to be contacted at all times so that people would ask them questions, offered ideas and gave feedback. This is important because being available plays a key role, as it shows that the leader values positive interaction. Being available also avoids making people feel abandoned and separate from leadership.

l Candidates should have facilitated the freedom of individuals or a community to articulate their opinions and ideas without fear of retaliation. Therefore we’re disqualifying those who used force, fraud, intimidation or terror in their dealings. Even those who took advantage of blind faith to cling on to power and enrich themselves are disqualified.

l Candidates should have confronted head-on and broken down the walls of tribalism and other forms of prejudices including gender discrimination.

l Candidates who took the lead in defining and addressing the diverse challenges we faced in 2020 and developed solutions are most welcome.

l The candidates should have inspired a vision of the future that also gave others a purpose to look forward to and something to work towards.

I tell you, if our political leaders were to cultivate these qualities our suffering would disappear overnight. In fact the leaders would get better results if they channel the energy they utilise in scheming, corruption, propaganda, lies and deceit to positive endeavours.

Back to my question: do you have anyone in mind? You can now answer the question so that we can start compiling…

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