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Mnangagwa won't allow Gukurahundi genocide to happen again

by Staff reporter
09 Apr 2024 at 06:20hrs | Views
Zimbabweans should continue to discuss Gukurahundi "openly accept and understand" what happened during the dark period in the country's history, to ensure such events will not happen again, President Mnangagwa has said.

In February 2019, President Mnangagwa embarked on an initiative to pursue the resolution of the Gukurahundi issue through an internal and home-grown process that would invite the participation of all affected,  to maintain and strengthen national unity among Zimbabweans.

Towards that end, the country has registered tremendous progress, with Gukurahundi public hearings expected to start soon — through a process that is led by traditional leaders.

In an interview with "Brick by Brick" magazine recently, the President said there is a sense of collective responsibility among all stakeholders, who are talking openly to tackle and find a lasting solution to the emotive issue.

"When we meet, we are discussing what happened in the past, the impact of that which happened and what do we do today to ameliorate that impact and avoid such things happening again.

"Why did it happen, we must discuss that openly and everybody should understand and accept the situation that happened. We should not allow such events to happen again because we must be talking to each other. Both sides must be talking to each other and say, that was not correct," the President said.

Asked whether the feedback has been positive, the President said there is "enthusiasm" around the discussions.

"We have held several meetings and if you were able to attend, you would see the enthusiasm that the Second Republic has brought to solve this issue. It has brought an approach of collective responsibility and collective planning," said the President.

The public hearings, which will be led by chiefs in their communities, aim to address the legacy of Gukurahundi, a period of conflict that affected some parts of Matabeleland and Midlands provinces in the 1980s.

President Mnangagwa has shown his commitment to facilitating processes that will bring closure to post-independence conflicts, as part of his vision of nation-building and fostering national unity.

During his fourth interface with traditional leaders from Matabeleland region recently, the President said his administration was determined to ensure the process was efficient and vigorous, with the best interests of the people in mind.

"I cannot over-emphasise the fact that this initiative is being implemented for the benefit of our people. Our commitment to a victim-centred approach remains steadfast, ensuring that the process is not just efficient, but also emphatic.

"This decision was not made without some reflection. The National Council of Chiefs, as the custodians of our culture, traditional practices and values, are best placed to handle this issue through their intimate and close relationship with the people.

"As we embarked on this process, we were not unaware of, nor had we forgotten, the external factors that ignited this conflict in our midst. The decision to resolve this issue on our own, amongst ourselves, is based on the realisation that none but ourselves can determine our destiny as a nation."

President Mnangagwa urged those involved in the exercise to be vigilant against external influences that seek to derail the process and plunge the country into a situation of internal disputes and conflict.

Source - The Chronicle