Zimbabwe as a nation is facing a very big challenge which is the culture of violence. It seems society no longer respects the sanctity of life hence people are killed in most cases over petty issues.
In the past society used to abhor violence and those that engaged in violence were punished severely or even banished from communities. Killing a person was taboo and those that dared to take a life had not only themselves punished but the whole clan paid dearly for such a misdemeanour. The situation has dramatically changed now as individuals are being killed willy-nilly and in most cases over trivial issues.
Society, it seems, has accepted this as a norm which is worrying. What has happened to those societal values of respecting life and shunning violence as a way of resolving disputes? The judiciary which presides over murder cases almost on a daily basis, is equally worried by this trend which is threatening our very existence as a society, as a nation.
Officially opening the 2017 legal year for the Gweru High Court circuit, Bulawayo High Court judge Justice Nicholas Mathonsi said there is a need to stop unwarranted killings especially by the youths. It seems today’s youths do not value life and again do not appreciate the repercussions of committing murder to their families and clans.
Most Zimbabweans believe that if one kills he or she is haunted by an avenging spirit (ngozi) which does not only punish the killer but the family and the entire clan. It is because of this belief that families and clans in the past punished severely any wayward individual who engaged in violence.
We need as Zimbabweans to once again restore these moral values. Individuals should dread engaging in violence fearing reprisals from society.
Community leaders, councillors, village heads, the chiefs and the Church should unite to strongly condemn violence.
We totally agree with Justice Mathonsi that we must valiantly and persistently condemn violence as the starting point. Those that choose to engage in violence should be declared outcasts and our courts should assist by incarcerating them for long periods.
The gospel of peaceful co-existence should be preached by each and every Zimbabwean and the message should be loud and clear that Zimbabwe does not tolerate violence and those that decide to engage in violence should know that they have no place in our communities.
We want to once call on Zimbabweans to shun all forms of violence and respect the sanctity of life as was the case in the past when murder cases were very rare.
Article Source: The Chronicle