So I have actually done advocacy write ups before the challenge came up, I decided to modify the last write up I made on Afrophobia because I dare say that it is a shame. Last month on Africa day,a colleague from Zimbabwe requested me to be part of a collaboration and she curated the write up https://wp.me/pctZKB-49 I as usual instead of writing about the good things decided to write about how Africa cannot continue to exhibit Afrophobia. Here we go.
The most intellectually lazy argument i’ve heard from South Africans is that having 3 million Zimbabweans living in South Africa is “evidence” that Zimbabwe is a failed state. There are more than 10 million Chinese people living and working in the SADC region alone. South Africa has a largest concentration of them, and of European foreigners, most of whom are in the Western Cape and Gauteng provinces. Angola has many Portuguese. Europe is supposedly a model of “democracy”, so there are no “dictators” there. China is a global economic superpower with billions of dollars in its fluid coffers. So tell me, why the hell are these Chinese and European foreigners there? When Zimbabweans, are in the country, they argue that they are there because Zimbabwe is a failed state. But then so are Chinese and European foreigners on the soil. What do they say about them since they don’t come from “failed” states? Why are they there?This targeting of Zimbabwe whenever issues of migration are discussed is nothing else but lazy thinking. And viewing the economic problems of Zimbabwe in isolation to the illegal sanctions that were imposed on it, as well as the great disinvestment agenda that it was subjected to, is opportunistic.
Part of the reason why we are going nowhere with Afrophonia/ Xenophobia is to reduce then to elitist conversation with Steve Biko hashtags. We haven’t tried to rationalize the irrationability of these acts. I have a friend, a typical middle-class has a degree from Stellenbosch she stays in the leafy neighbourhood of Grahams Town, in her life shes never seen struggle she hasn’t contested for resources before. She intellectualizes her debates on xenophobia reasoning, “its a shame”
On the other side I have a radical friend in the township hes the red beret movement of EFF of Julius Malema, to him hes regressive in thinking he boarders on fascism and says “they” must leave. Both of their approaches are wrong, I think the greatest failure of the ANC was failure to prepare the black south Africans for the economic hard times, to demistify economic growth and inclusion. African governments ought to wake up before s***hits the fan . The zulu say Umuntu ngomuntu ngabantu literally meaning that “I am because we are “,so let’s love because hate is expensive. African leadership ought to create employment opportunities inorder to reduce the influx of everyone in South Africa which makes the locals feel threatened.