Government wants Britain to compensate Zimbabwe for the resources it looted before the country’s independence in 1980.
Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa told senators on Thursday that the colonialists were so determined to siphon resources out of the country that they went to the extent of forming a committee to coordinate the plunder.
The VP said this after Chief Musarurwa asked him on the steps the Government was taking to repatriate skulls of some of the country’s forefathers that are held as trophies in some British museums.
The chief also asked the VP if the country was going to be compensated. VP Mnangagwa said the Government was still engaging the British on the repatriation process but also more importantly on the issue of compensation for looted re- sources.
“We are still engaging with the Government of the Queen. They admit that they have some of the things but some they do not have. We are not going to sit idle, we will continue searching and seeking that these be repatriated back to Zimbabwe, of which they agreed some of them, they do have,” said VP Mnangagwa.
“You also mentioned about compensation for the skulls, (it) is not the only compensation we want but we want compensation for the settling of the white settlers here in Zimbabwe over and above the skulls or heads.
“We also want compensation for the looting that they did from this nation. I am sure if you read the history books, they will inform you that there was a Loot Committee. The white settlers sat down and came out with a board to discuss looting.”
He urged chiefs to be involved in lobbying to support the Government.
VP Mnagagwa said countries such as Germany had returned some remains but Britain wants to be forced into doing so.
“The British are hard-headed, we actually had to force them out of this nation. So for us to get the remains of our ancestors that they have, we need to engage them and engage a legalistic approach for us to get our heritage back,” said VP Mnangagwa.
He said it was taboo for an African’s body and skull to be buried separately which is why the Government was pushing for the repatriation of some of the remains. herald