No True Healing Without True Justice: Lupane Youths

Lupane Youths debate on the National Healing process in Zimbabwe

Lupane Youths debate on the National Healing process in Zimbabwe

Echoing what has been said by their peers in urban Matabeleland, Lupane youths have demanded that a new and people driven constitution should be the primary document to guarantee true justice upon which the national healing process in Zimbabwe should be based.

At a meeting of more than 60 young people in Lupane, the Matabeleland North provincial capital, participant after participant emphasized that they would not feel comfortable being drawn to relive through account the ordeals of their past without the protection of a new people driven constitution nor before the disbandment of the current structures of state security organs.

“Mina kangihlaliseki ngokukhuluma ngaloludaba ngenxa yalokhu osokuke kwenzakala kithi. Singabe silola amazinyo ezilwane singa nanzeleli, besesiphenduka sizosiqeda sonke khona lapha. Ngangcono siqale silobe isisekelo sombuso esitsha ngoba yiso esingasivikela kulababantu” (I do not feel comfortable even talking of this process now because of what has happened several times in the past. We might just be sharpening the Lion’s teeth only for it to turn around and devour us. Let us write the new constitution first as it is the only document that can protect us from these people).

While others demanded that reparations were still necessary even after the courts had ruled on cases. The essence of this was questioned in light of deceased loved ones, who could neither be brought back to life nor enough money be paid to compensate their death.

” Ngenzeni ke mina ngesihlobo sami esabulawayo ngoba phela akula mali engamvusa emathuneni. Umxolela uthini umuntu nxa kunjalo?” (What do I do about my relative who was murdered in cold blood since no amount of money can bring them back to life. How do you forgive in such cases?)

Consensus on a few things was however reached as the youths agreed that now was not the time to be talking about the healing of the nation because the environment was not conducive enough. Beyond the new constitution, Young people demanded a free media, the separation of executive powers, and the prosecution of offenders regardless of party affiliation amongst other things.

As in all the meetings to discuss this topic, no one answer was enough and not all questions could be answered because of the enormity of the situation and the complicated nature of the process. One of the participants summed it all up by saying,

” When the time comes for these national processes like the constitution making, let us participate fully because as young people we have been the most depressingly affected by the policies of the previous and present governments”.

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