Home » News » How I Survived Death After Being Abducted By Zimbabwe’s Intelligence Agency In 1990 – Strive Masiyiwa
I Do Not Give Because I Have, I Have Because I Give, Strive Masiyiwa
Zimbabwean billionaire, Strive Masiyiwa

How I Survived Death After Being Abducted By Zimbabwe’s Intelligence Agency In 1990 – Strive Masiyiwa

The founder and Executive chairman of Econet Group Strive Masiyiwa shared a story on his Facebook page recalling the time he joined entrepreneurship as a young man.

‘How do nations find the best: “Pathway to Prosperity”? This was a question that intrigued me as a young man, entering entrepreneurship. This was a time when Japan was rising quickly to become the second richest country on earth, after the United States.

Japan appeared to go against everything I had been taught from my childhood — that nations were rich or poor based on natural resources. I knew that America was greatly endowed when it came to natural resources, but Japan? They had nothing! [nhadha!].

“We must industrialize like Japan!” one of my friends concluded.

“Is that the full story?” I asked reflectively.

“Look at the Soviets. They are not exactly industrializing themselves to prosperity, are they?”

So I kept reading. One of my favorite books at the time was called: “The Wealth and Poverty of Nations”.

When Michael Porter wrote “The Competitive Advantage of Nations”, I must have read it three times!

When China began to rise, I was totally fascinated to understand the Pathway they were adopting.

In 1990, I was abducted by a renegade group from Zimbabwe’s Intelligence agency, and for the quick intervention of my cousin who was one of the heroes of our Liberation war, and worked for the President, I probably would have died.

Mugabe, who felt less threatened at the time, invited me after my release to come and see him. I saw it as an opportunity to share some of my own views about how to develop the economy:

I was 29 years old!

I sent him a paper authored with three of my colleagues. He was totally intrigued by it! At the heart of our paper was the challenge of creating jobs.

We advocated Entrepreneurship, as a key pillar of that strategy. 30 years ago, we debated the paper for two days.

I remember those conversations so vividly, as though it was yesterday. There is a line I put on the cover of the paper.

“Without a clear vision of the future, a nation returns to its past.”

These days when I look at a nation, any nation, I always find myself wondering what Pathway to Prosperity they have chosen.

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