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'A hero to oppressed people internationally,' says Chinamasa

by ZimLive
06 Sep 2019 at 11:38hrs | Views
Tributes have been paid to former President Robert Mugabe who died aged 95 on Friday.

Former Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa spoke to the BBC about Mugabe's legacy, describing him as an "international giant".

Here is what Chinamasa had to say:

"I remember him as an African and international giant, an icon who dedicated his life to the liberation of not just Zimbabweans but to all oppressed people internationally.

He left a huge legacy, not just to Zimbabwe but to the continent. In Zimbabwe, his legacy was empowering black people in education and in encouraging to take over control of their resources in the country.

He is one of the first leaders to resolutely address the colonial question of land occupation. As a result Zimbabweans now are free, they now have control of their land, they now have control of their resources. He was a revolutionary, par excellence, and he contributed immensely to our liberation, to our economic emancipation, to our education. As you know, Zimbabwe has the highest literacy rate in Africa. Zimbabweans are most empowered in skills and education and they are all over the world thanks to the legacy that our revolutionary leader Cde Mugabe has left us and I'm very saddened that he has passed on.

There are no mixed feelings (about Mugabe's legacy after the economic collapse witnessed in the twilight of his rule). As you know, Zimbabweans took over their land following the British government under Tony Blair reneging on the commitment they made at Lancaster House in 1979 to make resources available to pay compensation to white farmers. The British reneged, so it was like back to the armed struggle in order to recover to our land. We have no regrets. The land question has been resolved irreversibly.

The ecconomic decline has been caused by sanctions imposed by the UK, by America, by Europe, by white Commonwealth countries in order to stifle, in order to undermine our independence. That is what has caused the economic decline.

But the resolution of the land question remains irreversible. Zimbabweans are now very much empowered compared to elsewhere in post-colonial Africa. We are most empowered and we have no regrets.

In the context of the circumstances of the time, we have been a very democratic nation. We never skipped any election. Every year elections were due, elections were held and we won the elections. What complicated our democracy was the financing or creation of an opposition by the Westminster Foundation in 1998 by the Blair government. They created an opposition funded externally to oppose the land issue and to continue their destabilisation of our country. That is what has disturbed the normal evolution of our democracy, otherwise we have been very much on the course to democracy.

A lot of people don't understand the events of November 2017. It was not against Mugabe. Because President Mugabe was now advanced in age, he was 93, he was losing control of power to his young wife, and the clique which surrounded the young wife. That destabilised the normal operations of both the party (Zanu PF) and the government. That is what the events of 2017 did. It was basically to bring order and stability which had been threatened by the young wife and the clique who had surrounded him and taking advantage of his advanced age. It was not an anti-Mugabe move per se that was taken in November 2017 but an anti-young wife and the clique that surrounded him which was threatening to destabilise the political and economic status of our country."



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Source - ZimLive

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