Latest News Editor's Choice

News / National

Mthuli Ncube 'snubs' Gukurahundi programmes

by Staff reporter
06 Dec 2022 at 05:04hrs | Views
HUMAN rights activists in Bulawayo have expressed concern over the failure by Finance minister Mthuli Ncube to fund Gukurahundi national healing programmes.

This is despite the launching of a Gukurahundi consultative process by President Emmerson Mnangagwa in Bulawayo in October which will be led by chiefs to help bring closure to the emotive issue.

The 1980s Gukurahundi massacres perpetrated by government forces saw the death of more than 20 000 civilians in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces.

Speaking yesterday in Bulawayo at an event to remember Gukurahundi victims organised by the Public Policy Research Institute Zimbabwe, Ibhetshu LikaZulu secretary-general Mbuso Fuzwayo decried lack of budgetary support to address the issue.

"They are not telling us the budget for the (Gukurahundi healing) programme. Even the recently announced 2023 national budget by Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube did not include the Gukurahundi issue, and so how is it going to be addressed?" Fuzwayo said.

Former Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office in the 2009 to 2013 Government of National Unity, Gorden Moyo said there was need to acknowledge the Gukurahundi massacres in order to foster unity in the country for economic, social and political prosperity.

"In similar genocides that happened in countries such as Burundi, Rwanda and others, their healing processes started by acknowledging the problem and honouring the dead. That is why they are currently moving ahead economically," Moyo said.

The event was also attended by National Peace and Reconciliation Commission chairperson Justice Selo Nare, Chiefs Council deputy president Chief Mtshane Khumalo and Women of Zimbabwe Arise leader Jane Williams.

Meanwhile, Nkayi Community Parliament on Sunday commemorated the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence (GBV), where it remembered women and girls who were violated during the Gukurahundi genocide.

Guest speakers were human rights activist Effie Ncube, educationist Anastacia Moyo and South Africa-based human rights activist Nobuhle Ajiti.

Ncube indicated that during the Gukurahundi era violence had a gender dimension, adding that the effects resulted in unemployment, poverty and hunger, among female victims.

"There was mass GBV on Ndebele women during the Gukurahundi era.  Some were raped, impregnated and abused simply because they were Ndebele. It was massive," Ncube said.

"We always talk about more than 20 000 civilians who were killed, but the figure is under-estimated. The damage was overwhelming on women and girls, but because of our cultural norms, it is not easy for the affected women to come out and tell their stories. Whatever solutions are being suggested to deal with the Gukurahundi issue, it is imperative to look into the gender component of how women were affected," he said.

Ncube said rape and torture were used as a weapon against women during the Gukurahundi era. She added that the most affected women had not recovered from trauma.

"Those people are now adults, but these evil incidents of rape and torture are still fresh in their minds because they did not receive counselling," Moyo added.

Ajiti said the GBV scourge during civil disturbances in different African countries had resulted in women losing their sources of livelihoods.

"The affected women end up entirely depending on men for survival because they would have lost chances to get education," Ajiti said.

Source - Newsday Zimbabwe