By Farai Dustee Marapira
Zimbabwe's independence commemoration of 2020 was an independence with a difference indeed. We were, and are still free, but we then and now were facing an onslaught by the dreaded covid-19. Indeed, considering its international death toll, it had potential to destroy all sense of festivity and hope amongst us all.
However, most newspapers woke up with fanfare over the memorial to our hard won independence. From State papers to independent flagships, notably the Daily News. I commend them for flying the flag of our national spirit high. It was indeed unexpected and welcome to see them dedicating so much time to celebration of our freedom. The newspapers refused to be cowed by the plague.
I further went to my social media platforms to congratulate my nation and revel in independence only to be rendered almost speechless by the many dedications to Zimbabwe that came forth along with my own. Social media was awash with congratulatory messages. It was a fanfare mood throughout. Keyboards have never made so much joyous noise.
Of course, as expected, a rabid few tried to dampen the mood. But either their cries were ignored or shouted down by the general public. Zimbabweans proudly came together to celebrate the birthing of their existence. Never again, will Zimbabweans be at the mercy of opportunist critics who criticize not from principle but from an expected foreign funded financial windfall. Zimbabweans are now so blessed with deep analytical lances and with less blind followership.
We may not have hugged, danced and made merry in the traditional manner. But ever ingenious as we always are, we took to social media to be one, if not physically, then most certainly in spirit. Covid-19, like colonialism and neo colonialism, has failed to defeat us... has failed to cower us... has failed to scare us. We stand tall, Zimbabwe remains free and jovial. It was indeed an independence worth remembering.
Dear Zimbabweans, with pride I say we stood tall against Covid-19 on 18th April. We were burdened but not cowed. We were not afraid. Zimbabwe... we stood resolute. Zimbabwe... we stood together, Dear Zimbabwe... a few days after independence I marvel at the oneness that reverberates amongst us. I marvel at what we are... together, and after achieving this how much more we can and shall achieve tomorrow! We stood as one, we stood as what we are. What we are is... Zimbabwe.