Friday 22 December 2023


ZAPU says Zimbabweans are more divided than ever before as there is no unity whatsoever, to warrant a whole public holiday, under the guise of commemorating the pivotal signing of the Unity Accord between PF ZAPU and ZANU on 22 December 1987.

ZAPU withdrew from the Unity Accord, claiming it realised that its compatriots in Zanu PF saw the Unity Accord as an opportunity to consolidate their grip on power and establish their ‘lifelong’ dream for a one-party state.

“It was hardly an acrimonious divorce but we were so eager to leave that we left our “PF” with ZANU. Today, that rogue pirate ship continues to sail under a false flag of patriotism,” said ZAPU National Spokesperson Richard Gandari who said the revolutionary party was not only appalled by the memories of the tortured history but the continuation of Zanu PF sponsored Gukurahundi in new forms.

“On January 4, 2022, a Gukurahundi memorial plaque erected by Ibhetshu Likazulu to commemorate the lives of Gukurahundi victims at Bhalagwe in Maphisa, Matabeleland South, was bombed by suspected state security operatives. No one has been held responsible for the barbaric act.

“Hardly a few months later, the Zanu PF government unceremoniously removed the Ndebele traditional shield from the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo International Airport and replaced it with its Coat of Arms and Emblem without consulting stakeholders. Despite the public outcry that followed, the shield was never restored.

“Again, the arbitrary arrests and the jailing of nine members of the Mthwakazi Republic Party made it clear that Zanu PF is still pursuing its pre-independence blueprint for the annihilation of Matabeleland and its people’s cultural identity.”

Gandari said ZAPU activists have also suffered from arrests upon exercising their constitutional rights to protest against malpractice.

“Our members have been harassed and detained by the police for decrying and protesting against the employment of people from other regions at the expense of locals, particularly in marginalised rural areas. The employment of nurses and teachers who do not speak local languages amounts to cultural imperialism. Yet there is a method to the madness. Language is the most basic means to dilute and eventually erase a people’s cultural identity,” he said.

“Zanu PF’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa is on public record, green-lighting civil registry clerks to ascribe any name of their choice when issuing identity documents to anybody too slow to assert their own identity.”

The ZAPU spokesperson said Zanu PF has habitually used systematic invasions and economic sabotage to undermine farms owned by anyone perceived to be an ‘enemy of the state.’

“Victims of these targeted farm invasions include our late ZAPU President Dr Dumiso Dabengwa, ZPRA ex-combatant, John Gazi, human rights lawyer, Siphosami Malunga, former National Healing and Integration co-minister, Moses Mzila-Ndlovu and our venerated ex-ZPRA commander, Thomas Ngwenya,” Gandari said.

“The list extends to commercial farmers in Mashonaland West as well as self-exiled former cabinet minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, whose citrus plants were gutted in a mysterious fire in Mazowe, Mashonaland Central, just two days after the general elections in August.”

Gandari said apart from land grabs, ZPRA veterans continue to be sidelined by the War Veterans Board, which he accused of being an appendage of Zanu PF.

He also noted there can be no unity worth celebrating on December 22 every year when the liberation contributions made by ZPRA ex-combatants are reduced to a historical footnote. “There can be no healing and integration when ZAPU is precluded from spearheading dialogue on Gukurahundi, now a prerogative of chiefs from Matabeleland and Midlands. Unity shall forever remain a mirage until genuine efforts are made to adopt and implement the tenets of restorative justice,” he said.

The ZAPU spokesperson said the party also mourns the death of democracy in Zimbabwe.

“A fraudulent plebiscite, roundly condemned by regional and international election observer missions, was foisted upon the restive populace of Zimbabwe,” Gandari said.

Having failed to secure an outright two-thirds majority in Parliament, Gandari said Zanu PF has capitalised on by-elections following recalls initiated by the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC).

“With more recalls lined up by the trigger-happy Sengezo Tshabangu, Zanu PF looks set to clinch a two-thirds majority after which it can wantonly amend the country’s Constitution with reckless abandon,” Gandari said.

“The greatest tragedy is Zimbabweans continue to fall for Zanu PF’s bag of tricks. Instead of objectively calling out Tshabangu for his self-defeating political excesses, many have been waylaid into denigrating King Lobengula and casting aspersions on the generality of citizens from Matabeleland.”

Gandari said when Douglas Mwonzora effected the very same recalls against the then MDC Alliance MPs, “no one attacked the memory of Emperor Munhumutapa, Prophet Chaminuka or even Chief Rekayi Tangwena.”

“Only Zanu PF stands to gain anything from fanning the embers of tribalism and regionalism. ZAPU implores Zimbabweans to resist the divide-and-rule tactics overused by the Soviet-styled and Taliban-inspired rogue regime in Harare. In Zimbabwe, all regions, all tribes, and all languages matter. There is no minority or majority when Zimbabwean citizenship is considered,” he said. CITE


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