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SB Moyo: Epitome of Zimbabwe revolution's finest cadre

23 Jan 2021 at 06:21hrs | Views
Comrade Sibusiso Moyo, the General of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces who pronounced the demise of the four decade-old Mugabe dictatorship in November is no more. Comrade SB Moyo, what a journey we have travelled.

As Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWA), we look back with fond memories of the good-cop-bad-cop ZDF-ZNLWA collaboration, leading to the extraordinary and successful execution of Operation Restore Legacy.

The world was left in wonderment at the events of November 2017. How could Zimbabwe deliver such an exquisite, all round politico-military operation. Even the ever prying eyes of vaunted Western intelligence agencies were all caught by total surprise as ZDF-ZNLWA dictated pace that fateful November.

The tortuous journey had started at the Kwekwe military cantonment. General Mujaji and Comrade Blessing "Bombshell" Geza, both wartime comrades had pre-emptively called me to deliver a lecture.

As the new chairman of ZNLWA as of the  2013 Masvingo War Veteran Congress, it had been made sure that I sit in the Politburo and Cabinet of Robert Mugabe. What I found in Cabinet appalled me.

Gross ineptitude by a dozing nonagenarian. I found the Cabinet to be a village-style debate of kleptomaniacs and ignoramuses comporting themselves as ministers of State. The Kwekwe lecture gave me my chance to state it as it was to fellow wartime cadres.

The "spy and the traitor" Jonathan Moyo had equally travelled to the Kwekwe cantonment to give a seminal re-orientation lecture. He was on a mission to win the hearts and minds of the ZDF officer corps.

The Chimurenga war deserter had sadly underestimated the collective revolutionary consciousness residing in the ex-ZANLA-ZIPRA core of the ZDF.

Unbeknown to the turncoat and traitor Professor, I arrived ahead of his time-slot. For the whole morning we schmoozed as he waited forlornly outside the lecture room. After I ended my presentation, everyone abruptly left. The cars sped away from the parking lot.

Jonathan Moyo was left forlorn with a very late lecture and an empty lecture room. Sadly, being a rank and totally compromised outsider, he either failed or stubbornly refused to read the tea leaves.

As seasoned guerrilla fighters enamoured to life and death danger, we went our own battle ways. Constitutional propriety foreclosed the army from engagement in politics. The Zimbabwe National War Veterans Association had no such qualms.

We gladly and ardently decided to harry and harass the Mugabe Project. He had clothed it in his counter-revolutionary G40s of the Gang of Four. Mugabe had been onto it for a long time.   

I personally eavesdropped on him as he tutored his wife at the official ambassadorial residence. This was during the 2006 State visit. The venal nonagenarian offered Mao's Jiang Jing as the model for Grace Mugabe. The backdrop was a recollection of his 1977 maiden visit to Beijing as the new leader of ZANU. That was at the height of the Chinese Gang of Four Turmoil.

My wife Monica hosted that dinner for the Mugabe couple. I tried to remind Mugabe of our shared sojourn at Zhunda Camp, Chomoio in 1975.

An irate Grace Mugabe rudely cut me out. All to my heartache of dismay. Such raconteur of humble beginnings in Mozambique guerrilla camps were no longer befitting. After all her husband, Mr President, was now donning the sartorial bespoke suits of Jermyn Street, London.

Tea with the British monarchy was the ultimate act of an African social climber. This even as he frothed out cryptic Marxist jargon as a cover of a revolution he secretly loathed. Jonathan Moyo, Saviour Kasukuwere, Grace Mugabe, Patrick Zhuwao were henceforth on a wild goose political chase.

They were being egged on by Happyton Bonyongwe, the obsessively self-conscious CIO director-general. Not surprising at all.

Bonyongwe had spent the war years as a military instructor at the Nachingwea Guerrilla Academy.

Meanwhile, the war front was the 1 000km border with Mozambique and the Zambezi River with Zambia. He had an estrangement to the battlefield exposure of his peers. Back to the prelude of Operation Restore Legacy.

As of the Kwekwe lecture, the Vakomana who had freed Zimbabwe collectively assumed a new mission - #Mugabe MustFall. After all through the Mgagao Document, ZANLA-ZIPRA had created the conditions for Mugabe's political rise to national leadership and eventual global stardom as a statesman. There is a dictum. What guerrilla freedom fighters give, they can also take.

Their sacrifices had made a hero out of an ordinary teacher in Mugabe who studiously refused military training as was then called for by ZANU leadership etiquette. The rump of the ZANLA-ZIPRA wartime cadres were going to have the last laugh.

A beleaguered Mugabe at his Blue Roof House was refusing to sign an abdication letter even when the political die was cast. Bonyongwe, now donning the mantle of Minister of Justice, had swords of Damocles hanging above everyone. He had after all signed fatwas against his erstwhile war comrades.

For the first time since Kwekwe three years earlier, I got in touch with Major General SB  Moyo. We were now openly, confidently and defiantly working as Team Trio with Victor Matemadanda, the ZNLWA secretary general. We had finally cornered our quarry.

Our Team Trio choreography had stationed tanks to block MDC youths who wanted to march to the Blue House. They wanted to lynch the Mugabes ahead of ZNLWA and ZANU youths. That way they would spawn mayhem at Blue Roof House.

All to stoke up global outrage against the ZNLWA and the well respected Zimbabwe military. Then some trigger happy figures in Western world military industrial establishment would have had the casus belli for a military attack against Zimbabwe, the way of the Iraq Invasion. The wily General SB Moyo duly obliged. His tank turned around to face the cloistered Mugabes. Our selected youths then started to march surrounding it.

Direction: Blue Roof House. The courage of Mugabe melted out like a block of ice in a Zimbabwe October sun.

The abdication letter was promptly despatched. This was as Grace Mugabe frantically and aplopeptically called then South African  president Jacob  Zuma's office to their rescue. She probably was haunted by the last moments of Muammar Gaddafi.

Senator Monica Mutsvangwa was saved from complete reading of the impeachment charge sheet in a joint sitting of the Zimbabwe Parliament at the Harare International Conference Centre Auditorium.

The menacing prancing of Happyton Bonyonge and his hangman noose had come to nought. Up to this time, little did Mugabe and Grace know that we already had President Zuma covered.

I had already been to Cape Town to liaise with Zuma's inner circle Such is the wonder of collective sub-regional guerrilla consciousness.

The ANC, PAC, SWAPO, ZANU-PF, ZAPU, MPLA and FRELIMO had not shared the tenancy of Tanzania guerrilla camps in vain. We had our networks beyond the latter day diplomatic pouch.

Hon Sibusiso Moyo, ZNLWA is ever indebted to you. You are the epitome of the finest cadre from the crucible of the Zimbabwe revolution.

A freedom fighter comrade, a cadre, a scholar, a soldier, an office, a general, statesman, a diplomat. You had all that endorsement of talent and capability in one man.

Salute to a great Zimbawean.

ZNLWA will forever cherish your memory.

Ambassador Christopher Mutsvangwa is the chairman of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association.

Source - the herald
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