Gukurahundi Revival: Why Nelson Chamisa's Visit to Nkomo Museum is Trending

Harare - The state seems to have been irked by recent comments by MDC Alliance opposition leader Nelson Chamisa - that the party will apologise to families affected by Gukurahundi, including the late politician Joshua Nkomo.  

The Gukurahundi was a series of massacres of Ndebele civilians carried out by the Zimbabwe National Army from early 1983 to late 1987. It derives from a Shona language term which loosely translates to "the early rain which washes away the chaff before the spring rains".

And contrary to media reports that Chamisa was offered Nkomo's walking stick, he actually said that the late father Zimbabwe was abused, just like former MDC founder Morgan Tsvangirai.

“He (late Dr Joshua Nkomo) is one of the people we should apologise to. We cannot apologise to the dead but we can apologise to those who are related to him, because he was abused for liberating the country. He was abused for being the father who wanted peace – he was abused for wanting unity in this country.

“Dr Nkomo represented what Tsvangirai represented. Peace in this country. Unity in Zimbabwe , Tolerance in Zimbabwe. Giving yourself to the people of Zimbabwe, the givingness without any selfishness. That’s what Tsvangirai represented, thats what President Tsvangirai represented.”
Chamisa at Nkomo's Museum

Chamisa was speaking at a recent MDC Alliance rally in Bulawayo at White City Stadium, thronged by thousands, after he payed homage to the departed liberation icon at his home at Number 17 Aberdeen Road in Matsheumhlophe. This house is now a museum managed by the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo National Foundation (JMNNF) .

The MDC Alliance's comments jilted the ruling party that has refused to apologise for the Gukurahundi era, that claimed an estimated 20 000 lives, with former president Robert Mugabe electing to term it a 'moment of madness'.

The government immediately engaged on a propaganda overdrive to counter Chamisa's hugely successfully outing, by roping Nkomo's son Sibangilizwe.

“There is nothing like that. Chamisa went to the Matsheumhlope house, which is now a museum, at the invitation of the chief executive officer of the Joshua Nkomo Foundation, Jabulani Hadebe. None of the family members knew about his visit.”

“I live in the Pelandaba house and it is a lie that he met any of the family members unless he came here as a ghost. In actual fact, I have never met Chamisa in my life, ”said Nkomo.

On claims by the state media that the family offered Chamisa Dr Nkomo’s walking stick, Nkomo said he was shocked.

“It’s not a matter that you can joke about. It’s an abomination that he can talk cheaply about intonga ka baba. That’s no ordinary stick, but it carries so much significance in terms of culture and tradition.”

A video to confirm Chamisa's utterances is readily available. lately, the aspiring young politician has been sucked in controversial statements, offering to build airports in villages and spaghetti roads in elected in 2018. 

Meanwhile, the sate barred a Gukurahundi victim meeting scheduled for Stanley Hall on April 8 by the police amid reports the venue had been booked for a church gathering.

“The police blocked us from holding the meeting and this is not the first time they have refused us a right to express our concerns. This is the third time they have blocked us. We are asking them (police) to tell us what they want us to do since they block us even when we tell them in advance of what we want to do,” the leader said. - Online Sources 

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