Veteran nationalist Mlevu celebrates 90th birthday

Moses James Mlevu Ndlovu

ZAPU Bulawayo council of elder’s chairperson Moses James Ndlovu, who turned 90 early this month, has been described as a national icon whose contribution to Zimbabwe’s independence is undisputed.

Moses James Mlevu Ndlovu
Moses James Mlevu Ndlovu


Speaking at a belated birthday party on Sunday, Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa said it was important for the party and country to acknowledge Ndlovu’s contribution while he was still alive.

Dabengwa said Ndlovu, who is also known as Mlevu, is not only a Zapu hero, but a national icon.

“There is no doubt that Mlevu is a Zapu hero and also a national hero. This is not up for discussion. We should accord and celebrate his status while he is still alive,” he said.

Ndlovu turned 90 on March 3 and he appeared in good health and walked comfortably.

According to Zapu, Ndlovu was among the first Zimbabweans to be given a five-year detention order at WhaWha Prison in July 1965.

Ndlovu was a strong campaigner in the 1980 elections and he was detained at Stops Camp during the Gukurahundi era in the 1980s.

He was billed to attend the Lancaster House Conference in London as part of a Zapu delegation, but failed to get a passport in time due to lack of funds.

“The entire membership of Zapu and its structures from branches to the presidency congratulated and celebrated the life of its national icon as he goes into his 91st year. We thank him for his role in our liberation struggle and in the fight for true independence, economic growth and development,” Zapu said in a statement.

Speaking at the same function, Zapu member Norman Mabhena said Ndlovu ranked among the few people who began fighting against white domination, but remained an unsung hero.

“He is an unsung liberation hero and we should celebrate his life. However, as Zapu we should also remember our members who have died and are not buried in Harare (at the National Heroes’ Acre),” Mabhena said.