Zapu statement on Zimbabwe’s 31st Independence Anniversary
STATEMENT – Zimbabwe turns 31 on April 18, 2011. Congratulations, Amhlophe, Makorokoto Zimbabwe. Sadly, events in the last 31 years have left the population wondering if for sure we are independent.
In our view, this is a valid question prompted by the Zanu-PF regime under Robert Mugabe’s leadership style. It has been a 31 years of controlling power, 31 years of ever declining employment, 31 years of worsening poverty, 31 years of virtually no development for most areas, 31 years of hunger, 31 years of homelessness, 31 years of fear, 31 years of no freedom of speech, 31 years of no freedom of assembly. The list of human rights violations is endless.
If truth be told, we replaced a white Ian Smith regime with an equally brutal, murderous, segregationist and self-centered black regime. The Zanu-PF regime has easily equalled if not bettered the Smith regime on the genocide front, killing an unbelievable 20 000 in Matabeleland and the Midlands during Gukurahundi in the 1980s. Their only crime was supporting Zapu, or belonging to the wrong tribe. As if the 20 000 were not enough, hundreds more nationals have been killed since the year 2000. Their crime: supporting a rival political party, the MDC. Zapu, the authentic and founder liberation movement of Zimbabwe, firmly believed and still believes in the doctrine of non-discrimination, freedom for all, the right to life for all, the right to one’s political opinion, the right to work, and the right to earn a decent wage. Sadly, our fellow liberation movement and disputed winner of the 1980 elections, Zanu, has used their 30 years in power to destroy all the hopes the people had when our nation became independent.
Zapu takes this opportunity to call on the Zanu-PF establishment to stop immediately those activities that continue to render our independence meaningless. These include the continued use of the justice system to punish opponents and critics, the curtailment of freedom of speech and assembly, freedom of the press, freedom of worship, among other human rights. It is sad that we are supposed to be celebrating independence when several citizens, including a Cabinet Minister and priest, are languishing in police cells for attending a memorial church service for victims of Gukurahundi, and for saying the obvious. It is sad that we celebrate independence at a time when someone has been languishing in the Rhodesian-built Khami Maximum Prison for allegedly expressing his wishes about a separate state of Matabeleland, which we all know was the case before colonization.
It is sad that we celebrate independence at a time when fellow nationals have lost land and all their assets, while some are on the brink of losing their businesses for having a white skin. As our late leader Dr Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo always stressed, the war was never against the colour of Smith, but against the unjust system. Zapu believed and still believes it is very possible to correct racial imbalances without victimizing anyone. Racism, whether black or white, is a sin.
Zapu calls on the Zanu-PF establishment to be honest with themselves and answer the question whether people are really free or what has simply changed is that we are now a colony of the people who claim to have decolonized us. Zapu, the founder and authentic liberation movement of Zimbabwe, offers itself to the people of Zimbabwe to once again to lead a real Third Chimurenga to re-liberate ourselves.
We take this opportunity to thank the international community, AU, SADC, and in particular our neighbour South Africa’s political leadership for working tirelessly to assist the people of Zimbabwe to move towards democracy, which certainly will arrive after the forthcoming elections. Zanu’s 31 years in power has surely made us all wiser. None but us can liberate ourselves.
Director Publicity, Information and Marketing