by Harvard Chinyemba
(Lusaka, Zambia.)

Africa has reached a critical stage where she urgently needs to break free from the shackles of poverty, mediocrity and backwardness. But the question is why? why must we continue to suffer when God has blessed us with abandunt natural and human resource? Sometimes we wake up in the morning, not knowing where our next meal will come from. It pains me that most African countries, long after independence, are still dependent.

I have come to believe that poverty is 90% political, I mean just take an eagle-eye-look at Zimbabwe; once Southern Africa's bread basket. Do not Forget the diamond rich Congo Kinshasa. It really chews me to the bone! We are going round in circles talking about hunger, wars and disease when others are busy in their labs, discovering, inventing etc.

And politicians? I am tired of their rhetoric. Families also have continued to disintegrate. Men, are you sure we will succeed in this fight with this everyone-for-him/herself mentality?

I thought poverty should unite us even more. It baffles me when we start to abandon one another without anything in our hands to write home about.
You can't just start copying everything even when the situation can not allow.

Aha!!!! that brings me to my main issue. Forget about the politicians and their rhetoric, forget about your environment. Don't put your life and your future (and that of your children) in jeopardy by leaning so much on the Government. Everything starts with you.

EDUCATION. We get an education in order to enhance ourselves,to position ourselves for greatness. Indeed, the need for every African to significantly change the way of his/her life can not be over-emphasised. Education has done a great deal to change man's social economic life. But you see, education alone can never take us anywhere.

We need something to add to our pile of credentials. Something that has helped great men and women who have ever lived on the face of the earth, men like Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein to mention but two.

Hardwork. This is what Africa should embrace, the song our children must be taught to
sing. Unfortunately, we the parents are creating a deadly weapon! A weapon of mass destruction. A weapon that would obliterate Africa's hope of ever developing into a powerhouse;Laziness.

Of course, No one is and therefore must not be an island. No one ever won a battle alone. We need cultural diversity for us to compare notes. Some cultures are good some bad, therefore let us not 'swallow' everything but choose those which are beneficial to Africa.

I am one of the ardent followers and admirer of western technological advancement. Surely, they need a pat on the back. This is a thing worth emulating. But I get offended when we try to copy everything without even comprehending fully
what we get ourselves into, and without warning we nose dive.

Take for instance the issue of child abuse. Today very few parents would draw a line between child abuse and 'training a child in the way he must go'. As a result, the vast majority of our youths have become very lazy. Everything has become child abuse.

I am reminded of a story folks told me about my late brother(forgive me,I am not trying to be hard on my late brother, may his soul rest in peace, but I feel I must share something with you so you can learn something out of it).

This story made me laugh my lungs out but eventually, I became very sad. Whenever Dad sent him to do a slightly hard job, my brother would protest and tell him that God does not get happy to see the body of his child lifting heavy stuff.

One day he decided to go to the village in order to raise some college funds through farming. I was told that when he got tired, he would lay on his side and continue tealing the land. I tell you, that made headlines in our "family newspaper".

Know where the problem was? I leave it there for you. I hate child abuse with grave hate every time I see it. It must not be tolerated. By the way, we have all been victims at one time or the other, but surely, a line must be drawn here.You see,this is Africa where poverty is the song we sing when we wake up and when we go to bed.

Don't compare yourselves with the West. Most of those guys find their foundation already laid by their fore bearers. Most of us here have to start from ground zero.Hence, everyone's participation is key to poverty alleviation, our children inclusive.

TO BE CONTINUED.............

On another note: I am glad you made it to 2008, I am still alive and kicking. Sorry for the long absence, book writing can be very hect....wait a minute, I never let you in on this one, did I? My apologies.I came across some pretty good lessons on the net about book writing and I am now putting what I learnt into practice. Straight to business.

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