While latest reports indicate that the doctors’ associations are yet to accept the offer, however, if it materialises, it would have come as a major reprieve to those whose lives are on the verge of demise due to preventable causes and government negligence. It will save many lives, save jobs and livelihoods and keep the nation going. Of course, such an act of generosity must be encouraged and Masiyiwa must be applauded for demonstrating leadership when those responsible for national issues are preoccupied with siphoning national resources at the expense of people’s lives.
There could be a lot more people willing to step up and emulate Masiyiwa – in fact that is what Zimbabwe needs right now. But what is the political currency of this gesture made by Masiyiwa? Are we in that season when Zanu PF’s stupidity is defying political logic?
The party has been in power for nearly four decades and its policies are responsible for the suffering of the masses. Corruption is siphoning resources out of State institutions such as hospitals. Everyone knows that we do not have a shortage of money, but we have a greedy leadership, which is why it is now easy to die of treatable causes. Now a Masiyiwa, who has not stolen national resources, is volunteering to use his own resources generated from his own business ventures to give a second chance to people whose imminent demise is a result of Zanu PF policies, mismanagement and neglect. S/he who saves one’s life is a small god and there is no better way of earning political soft power and credibility than stepping in at a crucial moment when people are facing death.
There is no doubt that the beneficiaries of the life-saving treatment through the Higher Life Foundation support are going to be profoundly indebted to Masiyiwa and that will open questions among the citizens on why they should vote for non-productive politicians who have made it a hobby to loot instead of addressing national challenges.
They can either co-opt Masiyiwa or steal from him this political capital.
Tapiwa Gomo is a development consultant based in Pretoria, South Africa. He writes here in his personal capacity.
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