President Emmerson Mnangagwa has come under heavy criticism from pressure groups and opposition political parties after he accused some unnamed individual of attempting to “reignite Gukurahundi”.
In his 2021 Unity Day message, Mnangagwa urged the nation to “guard against those negative elements which aim to re-ignite frozen differences to throw us back into renewed conflict”.
Responding to Mnangagwa’s remarks, Ibetshu Likazulu secretary-general Mbuso Fuzwayo said that since 2019, Mnangagwa has done nothing tangible to address the Gukurahundi issue. Said Fuzwayo:
It is sad that the murderer of the innocent man and woman, school children is accusing, condemning innocent people who are saying the process must not be perpetrator lead but victim cantered and lead by an independent commission.
He can threaten or issue statements, but I challenge him (Mnangagwa) to say one thing tangible since 2019 that has come out from his engagements that has healed or benefited victims.
Mnangagwa was the state security minister during the Gukurahundi era and is accused of having played role in the atrocities.
Fuzwayo suggested that if Mnangagwa is sincere about addressing Gukurahundi, he should at least return all ZAPU and ZIPRA properties which were confiscated by the government in 1982. He said:
Up to now, Mnangagwa has not returned ZPRA veterans’ properties despite cheating them to help him stage a coup against Robert Mugabe.
Also, to declare that those Gukurahundi victims who need medication and national documents can access the facilities is still nothing except low hanging fruits.
ZAPU spokesperson Msongelwa Ndlovu said Mnangagwa’s remarks confirm that he is unrepentant. Said Ndlovu:
This just shows that Emmerson Mnangagwa is unrepentant. It is unfortunate that he continues to make assertions that the victims caused the genocide.
Otherwise, how do you explain his warning about re-igniting Gukurahundi? How do you re-ignite what you didn’t ignite in the first place?
MDC Alliance Bulawayo provincial spokesperson Swithern Chirowodza said there can only be progress if the victims of Gukurahundi are fully represented in the process. He said:
The problem is Mnangagwa conveniently beliefs ZANU PF structures are government structures.
We all know that the government has been working with ZANU PF aligned structures such as the chief’s council and certain captured organizations to purportedly address the Gukurahundi issue.
This top-down approach will not yield anything unless the victims are fully represented in these processes.