President Emmerson Mnangagwa said that the nation should keep alive the memory of the late Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo from generation to generation in honour of his contribution to the country’s struggle for independence.
Posting on his social media pages, Mnangagwa said it is “a duty” for current national leaders to commemorate the life of “Father Zimbabwe”. He wrote:
The memory of the late veteran nationalist and one of the country’s founding fathers, Dr Joshua Nkomo, must be kept alive from generation to generation in honour of his contribution to the liberation of Zimbabwe.
It is the duty for us the leaders today to make sure that we observe and commemorate his life.
We remember him for his contribution and sacrifice throughout his life,he lived for this country, he struggled for this country,he went to war for this country.
There are people who initiated African nationalism in this country and Father Zimbabwe is one of those icons of our liberation struggle.
It is therefore critically important that we continuously commemorate and remember him because he is the foundation of our nation.
Meanwhile, the ZIPRA War Veterans Association wants the government to declare 1 July a public holiday to honour Nkomo for his contribution to the liberation and development of the country.
“Father Zimbabwe” or “Umdla Wethu”, as Nkomo was affectionately known, died on 1 July 1999.
Nkomo was the leader of ZAPU and its military wing ZIPRA during the liberation struggle.
He was made Vice President in 1987 after ZANU and ZAPU signed the Unity Accord to unite and end the mid-80s Gukurahundi killings.