Victoria Falls Gushungo resistance leader dies

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A LEADER of the Ndlovu residents in Victoria Falls, who are resisting the takeover of their land by developers, Mkhethwa Nyathi (85), has died.

BENSON DUBE
OWN CORRESPONDENT

Nyathi had recently vowed to defend his land till his last breath.

His daughter, Sanelisiwe, said her father died on Sunday evening after battling with a heart problem which had been exacerbated after Gushungo Housing Co-operative, the land developer at the centre of the dispute, took over their fields last year.

“My father settled here in the 1960 after they were moved by whites who were clearing the area for a park in Matopo in Matabeleland,” she said.

“He fought for this country under Zapu and was arrested on countless occasions.

“He thought he was now a free man and then came Gushungo Housing Co-operative which took his fields and threatened to move him to the game park.”

Sanelisiwe said her father had died a sad and broken man.

“He was harassed by the Rhodesians and now it is his fellow countrymen,” she continued.

Pretty Thebe, a village whose father died three years ago, said the loss of Nyathi had left the village vulnerable to many problems.

“Our father, Nyathi, has died and our land will be taken from us by force,” she said.

“We do not want with our land.

“We told them to deal with council land and not ours, but they are clearing our fields.”

Thebe said they were unsure of the burial arrangements as they feared burying Nyathi on his land, only to have the grave cleared as the land developers took over.

Nyathi is survived by his wife, Etha, six children, 31 grandchildren and 33 great grandchildren.

He will be buried at Ndlovu on Thursday.