COMMENTARY

Why In The World Does Zimbabwe NOT Have It’s Own Traditional Attire?

It’s such infamy that our country has no identified Traditional Wear. We don’t even have designated traditional attire that identifies us as Zimbabweans!

It has become an embarrassing anthem around the globe. Zimbabwe is a charity case that continuously  borrows (steals) their traditional dress from other African countries. We are Guilty as charged!
 I scouted around and I found the most flamboyant traditional wear from across the African continent and guess what?! I failed to identify our own despite Ndebele gear which obviously branches from Zulu background, so I scratched that ! Isn’t this absurd? Isn’t traditional gear an important element of our Culture and a necessary show of Heritage?

Gradually outfits inspired by Nigeria, Ghana and Zambia have begun to be termed traditional wear by locals. Can these be called traditional clothing for Zimbabwe? NO, I DON’T THINK SO! From Politicians to socialites, Zimbabweans have found solace in adopting traditional outfits from our fellow sister countries and this has created a dilemma. What  exactly do we wear when asked to wear traditional gear? This sad case was evident during Miss Africa USA ZIM where our contestant wore horns for traditional wear. Really can we identify that as traditional wear? Many cultural events are held in Zimbabwe but I have not seen anyone wearing traditional dresses. Is this a case of identity crisis, ignorance or arrogance? This is depressing and is a clear picture of deteriorating Traditional values because in reality all these borrowed attires have no resemblance to what our ancestors termed traditional wear

Traditional wear according to Zimbabweans is a mixture of African attires from different countries especially Ghana and Nigeria. No lie I would rock the West African java clothing any day, the designs range from breathtaking to disastrous, so much that to a certain I don’t blame our people.  But it should definitely not be to the detriment of embracing our own.

It is high time for Zimbabweans to face reality that the traditional wear problem is a gigantic matter of concern and our present culture is diverse and bears little resemblance to the traditions of our long gone ancestors. People should simply stop obsessing about other countries’ heritage and reconnect with their own  roots because, from where I am standing, we have a serious case of identity crisis people!

Munashe Chakaonda

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One Comment
  • Paida
    15 May 2019 at 11:14
    Leave a Reply

    You clearly didn’t do enough research. We do have traditional wear it just doesn’t resemble whatever the hell it is you want it to.

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