Paul Kagame is undoubtedly the man of the moment in Africa.
Robert Gabriel Mugabe used to hold that position from the late 80s until the time he was removed from power.
His remarks to our current President Emmerson Mnangagwa remain a truth that we really need to take time and think of. We need to start working on things at international level.
Representing Brand Zimbabwe is the greatest honour that any citizen can ever acquire as it is an instrument in the promotion of society’s talent, skill and innovation of a nation, for the greater glory of Brand visibility and Equity…We have citizens that are hands on, as they use their ideas and skills to further not only career interests but brand Zimbabwe interests. However, it seems as if at the end of the day, they are disappointed and frustrated because the support from people in offices of authority is poor and selective while bureaucracy also plays a part.
In the process of Branding a country to just simplify, it’s a matter of brand making and brand promoting everything unique original and great about that country. And that also includes the ideas, skills and concepts that citizens comes up with.
And in Zimbabwe, it’s the other way around as the people who sit in offices of influence remain clueless about what their job description is and what ideas can do for the country. The concept of having brands within a Brand is what most country powerhouses globally have mastered.
Everything that we see today in the world was an idea in the mind of its creator, it was a thought converted into a product. Remember the Zimbabwean man who made an aircraft? His first aircraft was condemned outright by the Civil Aviation Authority, leading to many back and forth battles with authorities. We failed to capitalize on this man’s talent in engineering, we would have been creating our own automobile and aircraft brands as we speak right now.
Another man an engineer, was frustrated by people in offices of authority and he left for USA, and now the US government works with him as one of their best engineers.
Chief executive officers have done the same, left and most of them now lead top South African firms. Even in sport it has become an embarrassment that our talented athletes are not being paid or not receiving funding even to travel to represent Zimbabwe. Clearly we are not serious because we do not understand the return on investment that as visible as we are, the more likable we become, the more preferred we are and the global market buys into our products and services…
Over the years Zimbabwe has lost a lot of good ideas and concepts as these talented people have left the country after being frustrated by people in offices that are made to facilitate the dream. These are dreams that could have transformed Zimbabwe one way or another, changing people’s lives. In the United States they take up talented people, and work with them as they are assets. The likes of Elon Musk, the founder and owner of Tesla who got support from the US government to establish his project which is now making the USA billions of Dollars and branding America as a powerhouse for innovation.
The President, Cde Mnangagwa must ensure that people’s ideas and innovations that add value to brand Zimbabwe must not die but must get the support they require, because at this stage we need the dreamers to solve our challenges. Moreover, I advise that the Country Branding Organization must be set up expediently so that some of these matters are dealt with by people with technical know how.
The people that work in government offices must understand that ideas are what make a country great, and not a mine or agro field and must stop personalizing these offices, become open minded and do their job to support and facilitate the dreams of citizens.
Tare Munzara is a country branding expert, and is also the chief executive officer at Destination Marketing International. Do not miss the next edition of the column next week.