Parliament does an unpatriotic thing.


By Trevor Ncube

Zimbabweans have experienced acute economic hardships in the past few months courtesy of a collapsing currency.

Amidst this, it is clear President Mnangagwa’s government has no intention of running free and fair elections if reports of gerrymandering and missing names on the voters’ roll are anything to go by. To add salt to a wound, last week parliament passed the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Amendment Bill also known as the Patriotic Bill which is patently unconstitutional and unjust.

This shows the Zanu-PF government is self-serving and has little regard for the opinions of the electorate. It prioritises only its interests of remaining in power. It takes advantage of the electorate’s docility which gives the populace the capacity to endure repression and crushing poverty.

The Patriotic Bill is about protecting the Zanu-PF government from criticism – it serves no public interest. Writing from Birmingham City Jail in 1963, Martin Luther King Jr said: “One has not only a legal, but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.” The Patriotic Bill is one such unjust proposed law; it is a bad law that is specially crafted to instil fear into the citizens.

It must be rejected by all who genuinely love Zimbabwe. There must be an acceptable way of dealing with rogue NGO’s and politicians who exist to promote the West’s regime change agenda.

The proposed law is an assault on the Constitution of Zimbabwe – a product of broad-based public consultation. The Bill is intended to criminalise criticism of government and is an affront to press freedom and freedom of expression.

Patriotism, like “the national interest”, is one of the most abused words by politicians. Samuel Johnson, in criticising William Pitt’s abuse of the term, famously said: “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.”

Because Zanu-PF has failed to deliver on the people’s aspirations, it seeks to silence any form of criticism by threatening death and imprisonment – it seeks to hide its incompetence and corruption behind an unjust law.

Instead of thinking up new self-serving and repressive laws, Mnangagwa and his minions must focus on delivering on the people’s aspirations. He must focus on creating an enabling environment that will unleash innovation and prosperity. He must focus on creating an environment which will attract both local and foreign investors to create jobs. This should be much easier than cowing people into subservience.

You cannot legislate patriotism, just like you can’t force people to love or respect you. Patriotism is the “feeling of love, devotion, and a sense of attachment to one’s country.” A number of factors contribute to one being patriotic to their country such as culture, language, sports achievements and benefits from economic prosperity.

Mark Twain said: “Patriotism is supporting your country all the time and your government when it deserves it.” Mnangagwa’s government has just proved once again that it does not deserve the support of peace-loving and self-respecting citizens.

Under the circumstances the only decent thing that Zimbabweans must now do, is approach the Constitutional Court to strike down this offensive law. The judiciary, if not captured, should find it difficult to justify this law.

In Conversation with Rutendo Kahari


Rutendo Kahari’s place of loss and pain became her source of inspiration. When Rutendo’s father died she realised she wanted to make a difference through health and science. Rutendo is now on a journey to finding her purpose through getting education and knowledge in finding cures for different diseases in Africa. She has been admitted to Baylor University(USA) , and she’s seeking assistance to achieve her dreams of addressing the challenge of tropical and infectious diseases in Africa. Watch her episode here

Audience Responses

From the Rutendo Kahari episode, our community had this to say:

Awesome. This is quite intriguing. Rutendo, keep going.
Rutendo is very astute, focused and clearly aware of what she wants. I’m really impressed about how she came to the decision to study biochemistry, very well thought out with a clear mission. She’s already making a difference.
powerful and inspirational.

Coming Next: In Conversation with Godfrey Tsenengamu


Don’t miss the next episode with Founder: Front for Economic Emancipation in Zimbabwe Godfrey Tsenengamu In Conversation with Trevor.

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in conversation with trevorZimbabwean entrepreneur and newspaper publisher Trevor Ncube sits
down with various high-profile guests in a series of candid,
conversations that seeks to go beyond the headlines
and beyond the sensational.

Book of the Week

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Atomic Habits by James Clear

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Recommended Reading:

This Mournable Body

by Tsitsi Dangarembgwa

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