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Zimbabwe fails to secure Hangman- July 2011

Updated on July 21, 2011
Zimbabwe Flag
Zimbabwe Flag

The scoop-No one coming up to do the dirty work

It seems no one in Zimbabwe is willing to do the dirty work in terms of hanging people. The country has been looking for a hangman for a long-time now since they lost the last one. It may be baffling to some that, in a country with such a high rate of unemployment, someone would turn down a job. Well, yes. That is the case here. Let us investigate why.

The Headlines.

"A job to kill people available in Zimbabwe” The Zimbabwe Metro

"No takers for Hangman's job"- The Zimbabwean


With unemployment reaching well over 90% one would think that earning a living is a major priority that overrides all else in our decision making, yet over the last 13 years (to 2011) there have been no takers for the hangman's job since the last once retirement. What then is the cause of such a situation occurring in a country with millions of people eligible for the job?

Nature of the Job vs. Means of living

In most cultures, taking a life under the guise of the law or otherwise, is not an accepted social norm. True is the fact in Africa, more so in Zimbabwe where taking a life has many repercussions including a decline into madness. This is due to what is believed to be the avenging spirit of the deceased (This is called Ngozi in Shona: one of Zimbabwe’s native languages). So it is understandable that such a job post would lie vacant for years in a country where employment is hard to come by.


The saying “ I am because you are” popularised by Nelson Mandela, is recognition of our inter-connectedness. What I do affects you in one-way or the other. The reverse is true. African cultures have some level of respect for this way of living though it is fast declining due to the break down of the moral fibre. Nonetheless, the fact that cultures are built on this type of foundation in Zimbabwe makes human life worth more than monetary gain-this is of course not a blanket assumption of the goodness of African social norms reflected in Zimbabwe, there are still radical instances where human life is totally taken for granted.

The general conclusion is that, it is an astounding fact that a country fails to secure the services of a Hangman. There must be one daring, lost soul out there with the nerve to take up the job. Well, as of July 2011, there has not been one out of the eligible millions to step up and take the post. This is in a way a reassuring fact to state that, in the midst of a recovery from a record breaking inflation and high unemployment rate, Zimbabweans still have something to be proud of-respect for the human life, criminal or not.

$100 000 000 000 000 (100 trillion dollars)
$100 000 000 000 000 (100 trillion dollars)

Fun fact on Zimbabwe’s inflation

The highest note produced from the southern African countries inflation period was $ZW 100 000 000 000 (One hundred trillion Zimbabwe Dollars-pictured here.) This was after the currency had been adjusted to knock off some zeros because they could not fit on the printing surface.


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    • Alladream74 profile imageAUTHOR

      Victor Mavedzenge 

      7 years ago from Oakland, California

      @Thanks Bud.I will post an update as and when i get news from home

    • Bud Gallant profile image

      Bud Gallant 

      7 years ago from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

      Very interesting hub! I think it's a positive indicator, as well. Like you said, it shows a respect for life, and it is pretty amazing that not a single person was willing to take this job. I wonder if now that it has become a new story, there will be a different result. Great work!

    • Alladream74 profile imageAUTHOR

      Victor Mavedzenge 

      7 years ago from Oakland, California

      @Justom.The note is real.It barely lasted a month in circulation and could barely buy a loaf of bred.It has been decommissioned now and is really worth nothing except to collectors. Sellers on ebay ask for between $5-$10 per note.Thanks for passing by!

    • justom profile image


      7 years ago from 41042

      Victor, this is a great and most interesting hub. I wish more folks had that kind of character here in the U.S.! I love the note too is it real? If so how much is that in $? Nice work!! Peace!! Tom


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