Sunday, November 21, 2010
Munyaradzi Chidzonga's compensation for depression
had told myself I was not going to comment on the Zimbabwe Big Brother candidate – Munyaradzi Chidzonga’s loss conundrum. I mean, enough criticism already. (Pictured: Big Brother loser, Munyaradzi Chidzonga)
However, for someone who supported the state’s parting with $1.8 million for the Warriors-Samba Boys friendly, I have recently been accused of hypocrisy for not supporting the Munya (as he is affectionately known) money initiative by some close friends. I have defended the former by saying; at least over 40 000 people were involved, versus just one person. But that is fodder for another post.
When I watched the unprecedented meet with the president on the news last week, I was motivated to highlight that the kerfuffle around Munya and his subsequent reception of US$300 000 in ‘compensation fees to cushion him against depression’ served at least one good purpose for me; the opportunity to witness our leaders demonstrate their ability to raise big funds in a considerably short space of time.
One word from a flaky professor and another from an obscure land tycoon and just like that, on a whim, thousands were raised in less than a week. If this were to be done on a sustained basis for more meaningful things, imagine what that would do for our country’s development. Imagine what US$300 000 would do for the non-working traffic lights and potholes littering Harare’s streets; hundreds of needless deaths would be avoided. Imagine what a similar initiative would add to the lives of the displaced folk living and scavenging like animals at Borrowdale race course…
Hopefully none of that money was donated from the collective taxpayers’ pocket. As I watched the news, I couldn’t help drawing thin parallels between the big rush for the ‘Diamond boy’ and the diesel n’anga circus. Quite an embarrassment to see such big men getting caught up in such silly things. As someone I know would say it, it just somehow feels super-stupid.
When the First Spin Crowd set to work, the Munya fundraising campaign seemed to suddenly precipitate into something of a publicity gimmick masquerading under the guise of wish granting, with Munya in the centre as the oblivious pawn. Words like youth empowerment, sovereignty, and son of the soil interestingly found their way into the President’s speech at the colourful reception at state house. Talk about grabbing slight opportunities.
And who would have thought Gushungo was a fan or even had the time to watch Big Brother? Perhaps we can put this down to the work of an excellent briefing by the First Spin Crowd, who are we kidding? But one thing is for certain, they conveniently neglected to inform the president that the son of the soil had just come back from a house that harboured totemless, nicotine addicted youths among which were women who often kissed each other full on the mouth. The First Homophobe would have rather died than be remotely associated with such.
For the icing on the cake; asked (Big Brother style) what he was going to do with all that cash, the ever grinning young man looked into the camera and said, “I’m going to use the bulk of it to market and promote my movie,” referring to some obscure production in which he featured, that we are yet to know the full details of. Let’s just say it was a relief to know that the speech was going to end and that he was courteous enough not to abuse the redundant and clichéd charity card. Now that would have defeated the whole idea, wouldn’t it? - Kubatana