Stories written by Jeffrey Moyo

Zimbabweans Gambling for a Living Amid Escalating Hardships

Twenty years after completing high school in Zimbabwe, 38-year-old Tinago Mukono still has not found employment, and in order to survive, he has switched to betting, turning it into a form of employment. Every day throughout the week, Mukono leaves his home to join many others like him in betting clubs strewn across Harare, the Zimbabwean capital, with the hope of making it.

Homeless Families Now a Growing Issue in Zimbabwe

It is do or die on the streets of Zimbabwe as homeless families battle for survival solely depending on begging. Such is the life of 69-year-old Gladys Mugabe, who lives with her disabled son in Harare Gardens, a well-known recreational park in the Zimbabwean capital, Harare. Over the decades, Zimbabwe’s economy has underperformed. It started in 2000 with the departure of white commercial farmers, and the country has experienced subsequent periods of hyperinflation, which the International Monetary Fund estimated reached 172% in July last year.

From Dancing ‘For a Living’ to Dancing For ‘Women’s Dignity’

At first, he danced for money, but later on, he realized the need to dance for sanitary pads in order to help poor girls and women. Now, 29-year-old Proud Mugunhu conducts dance tutorials that earn him 100 pads from each session.

Seniors Thriving Through Plastic Waste in Zimbabwe

They do not have a pension nor financial support from families or relatives, but they have themselves. Now they have become collectors of plastic waste, which they turn into products as they battle for survival - earning money from the growing plastic pollution in Zimbabwe.

Greener Pastures Not So Green for Zimbabweans in the Diaspora

They have high-paying jobs, a high standard of living, and almost everything they need, but for Zimbabweans abroad, all that glitters is not gold. Twenty-eight-year-old Gift Gonye, based in Germany, is one such Zimbabwean, and he is apparently not satisfied with his life abroad.

‘Stone-Age’ Donkey-Drawn Carts Ply Zimbabwe’s Abandoned Remote Routes

From the Masvingo-Beitbridge highway in Zimbabwe at a spot popularly known as Turn-P, the road passing through Neshuro Township has been degraded, disused, and derelict for over two decades, with buses avoiding the route. Now donkey-drawn carts that operate alongside jalopy vehicles have become the new alternative for remote travellers around Mwenezi villages.

Forests Disappearing in Energy Poor Zimbabwean Cities

In New Ashdon Park, a medium-density area in the Zimbabwean capital, Harare, at new homes that have replaced a once thriving forest, makeshift fireplaces have become common sights as residents solely depend on firewood for energy.

Cattle Turn Into New Currency Amid Inflation in Zimbabwe

In 2007 as inflation walloped the Zimbabwean currency, rendering it valueless, then 54-year-old Langton Musaigwa of Mataruse village west of Zimbabwe in Mberengwa district switched to cattle as his currency.

Artisanal Miners Ruining Already Diminishing Forests in Zimbabwe

With homemade tents scattered about, hordes of artisanal gold miners throng parts of Mazowe village in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland Central Province, where they have cut down thousands of trees to process gold ore.

Poverty Haunts Resettled Farmers in Zimbabwe

Edious Murewa has for years boasted of owning a 10-hectare piece of land, but now the 52-year-old is full of regrets. He faces poverty years after he invaded part of a farm once owned by a white commercial farmer.

Aged Persons Haunted by Abuse in Zimbabwe

At his house in Mabvuku, a high-density suburb in Harare, the Zimbabwean capital, 86-year-old Tinago Murape claims his grandchildren starve him. Not only that, but Murape, who now walks with the support of a walking stick, said his three grandchildren – grown-up men with their wives and children living in his house, accuse him of bewitching them.

Sand Poachers Fueling Environmental Harm in Zimbabwe

In Chitungwiza, right next to the highway, 36-year-old Nesbit Gavanga and his five colleagues use shovels as they load trucks with sand. The six apparently are in the business of sand-poaching and openly explain that every other day they engage in running battles with environmental officials who seek to curtail land degradation here. The group’s informal sand quarry lies 25 kilometers southeast of the Zimbabwean capital Harare.

Starvation Pounds Inflation-Hit Urban Zimbabweans

With inflation at 256.9 percent, 49-year-old Dambudzo Chauruka can no longer afford to buy bread despite working as a civil servant in Zimbabwe.

Nonagenarian Opposition Backer Contends for Change in Zimbabwe

Idah Hanyani, popularly known as Gogo Chihera, has backed the opposition since Zimbabwe gained independence in 1980. Born in Wedza, a district in Zimbabwe’s Mashonaland East province, the 91-year-old first supported United African National Council (UANC).

Zimbabwe’s Unsung Living HIV/AIDS Hero Spreads Message of Hope

In 2001, when Reki Jimu was 30 years old, his wife died aged 27. The now 51-year-old Jimu said the couple’s two sons died prematurely. Both were underweight and frail, although the couple had been previously blessed with a baby girl, Faith Jimu, who is now a 29-year-old mother of three.

Xenophobia-hit Zimbabweans Saving Country’s Dead Economy

Two decades ago, Trynos Mahamba left Zimbabwe for the United Kingdom, but back home, he has changed the lives of his relatives. Since the day after he left, Mahamba (53) has been sending money home while Zimbabwe’s economy faltered amidst violent land seizures from commercial white farmers during Zimbabwe’s land reform programme.

Mounting Scramble for Coronavirus Vaccines in Zimbabwe

More than a month ago, she lost her parents, brother, and wife, to the coronavirus. Then her fiancé battled COVID-19, but 27-year-old Melinda Gavi said she had not contracted the disease.

Zimbabwe’s Inflation Makes it Hard to Keep Track of Cost of Living

Stung by the country’s spiralling inflation, Zimbabwe’s government workers took to the streets this week for the first ever police-sectioned march demanding improved wages.

Zimbabwe’s Resettled Farmers Hawking Cigarettes to Survive

For subsistence farmer Rogers Hove—who proudly brandishes a worn out letter for his five hectare piece of land he obtained from government following the chaotic land seizures from white commercial farmers over two decades ago—what matters most to him, “is to see my piece of land in my possession”.

Once Decimated by AIDS, Zimbabwe’s Khoisan Tribe Embraces Treatment

Sixty-seven-year-old Hloniphani Sidingo gives a broad smile while popping out through the gate of a clinic in her village, as she heads home clutching containers of anti-retroviral pills.

From El Nino Drought to Floods, Zimbabwe’s Double Trouble

Dairai Churu, 53, sits with his chin cupped in his palms next to mounds of rubble from his destroyed makeshift home in the Caledonia informal settlement approximately 30 kilometers east of Harare, thanks to the floods that have inundated Zimbabwe since the end of last year.

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