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Nkomo to be remembered

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ZIMBABWE is at crossroads and lacks peace as there is no unifying leader in the calibre of the late Vice-President Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo, the Joshua Nkomo Cultural Movement (JNCM) said yesterday.

LUYANDUHLOBO MAKWATI/
NQOBANI NDLOVU

Speaking ahead of this year’s commemorations to remember the late veteran nationalist in Bulawayo, JNCM national director Mehluli Moyo said the country could only have peace if leaders adopted Nkomo’s wisdom and unifying leadership style.

“Zimbabwe is at the crossroads. The question that comes to mind is how we can move forward and continuously heal Zimbabwe. The country would be healthier if it follows the wisdom of Father Zimbabwe,” Moyo told journalists at a meeting to announce plans for the commemorations.

Moyo indicated the commemorations would be held under the theme “Healing the Nation” on July 1, the day Nkomo died, at Stanley Square in Makokoba.

“He adopted an acknowledgement for past violations as a process of facilitating individual and national healing and reconciliation.

“He, however, was persecuted for his candid truth-seeking initiative, that willingness to seek justice based on people’s understandings of what happened to them which can be achieved if all Zimbabweans care to remember him for his ideals and works,” Moyo added.

He said Zimbabwe needs to deliberate transitional justice policies as a means of achieving national healing and reconciliation, as well as building a future based on respect for human rights and the rule of law.

The country has for years suffered human rights violations, especially in the run-up to elections.

In 2008, politically-motivated violence left hundreds dead and maimed, and scores displaced.

“Among the desires and ideals of Nkomo, the Zimbabwe case today highlights the importance of critically examining the relevance of instituting a healing process, a course of transitional justice systems with a view to make informed choices about achieving a balance between comprehensive processes of restorative justice and retributive justice systems,” Moyo said.

He said they would begin the commemorations with a 4km walk in the morning themed “General Josh National Healing Power” from Blue Lagoon at the Renkini bus terminus to the central business district and ending at Stanley Square.

“We are working hard towards this annual event. We look forward to seeing people coming together and celebrating the legacy of Umdala Wethu who was a peace builder and a unifier, among some of his great attributes,” he said.

Moyo said the walk was meant for people to embark on a healing process to uproot anger, frustration and pain.

Nkomo died on July 1, 1999.

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