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'Joshua Nkomo wanted blacks to own land'

by Staff reporter
11 Jun 2017 at 10:58hrs | Views
THOUSANDS of people yesterday converged on St Joseph Village in Kezi under Chief Bidi to celebrate the birthday of the late Vice-President and Father Zimbabwe Dr Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo who was born on 7 June 1917, a day which marked a century since he was born.

Joining the thousands of people were traditional leaders including chiefs from Matabeleland South, cultural groups, villagers from the district while others came from other parts of the country. The big crowd joined the Nkomo family to celebrate Dr Nkomo's contributions to the country before and after independence. St Joseph is the rural home of

Dr Nkomo. The late Vice-President died on 1 July in 1999 at the age of 82.

Speaking during the commemoration, Dr Nkomo's son Mr Sibangilizwe Nkomo said the day was a landmark as they remember his father's teachings.

"We get to know of his philosophy of humanity, peace, unity and living in harmony regardless of colour. This day is important to commemorate so as to pass on his legacy," said Mr Nkomo.

He said as a family they appreciated people's support as they joined them to celebrate the day which would have marked his father's 100th birthday. Prominent journalist who worked with Dr Nkomo during the liberation struggle, Saul Gwakuba Ndlovu described the late Vice-President as a very brave man. "Today I want to talk about the philosophy of Joshua Mqabuko. I met him at Kutama in 1951 after he had completed his Bachelor of Social Work Degree. During that period we didn't know what a degree was hence he was one of a few people who had achieved such a big thing. In 1954 while at Stanley Hall in Makokoba, he was saying the land should be given back to the black people," said Ndlovu.

"All those who were born after Independence should know that back then we were afraid of the whites, we referred to them as the earthly gods. Dr Nkomo was a very brave man because he was a product of abuse by the whites."

He urged young people to appreciate their culture. Ndlovu said the issue of land was important to Dr Nkomo as the whites grabbed the fertile pieces of land from the black majority. Ndlovu said Dr Nkomo was a man who believed in unity not violence.

Chief Bidi who was hosting the event said he was very happy to host such an important occasion.

"This event means a lot to us considering that Dr Nkomo was from this area. Even the villagers came in their numbers which shows that they were happy and willing to support this event," he said.

The event was punctuated with entertainment from various cultural groups. The day was held under the theme "Celebrating Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo's Centenary through Our Arts, Culture and Heritage".

Source - zimpapers

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