I have no weapons: JB Sibanda

FORMER war veterans’ leader Jabulani Sibanda has expressed fears that State agents might “plant” guns at his farm and arrest him, after an ex-combatant accused him of having an armoury and planning revolt against the government.

NQOBANI NDLOVU
STAFF REPORTER

War veterans’ association secretary general Victor Matemadanda told a meeting of liberation war fighters held in Gweru on Saturday that Sibanda should not be trusted, as he might cause instability.

“There is need for police and State security to investigate former war veterans’ chairperson Jabulani Sibanda and his sympathisers to establish if they do not have any armoury which could be used to revolt against the government,” Matemadanda was quoted by the State media telling war veterans.

Sibanda, in an interview on Tuesday, said he had no guns, adding the new war veterans’ executive and other State players might be harbouring plans to “plant” weapons at his farm and arrest him.

“They (war veterans) have associated themselves with the army,” he said.

“They operate from the barracks and since they have access to weapons, it would not be surprising if they took them and planted them at my farm or in my yard.

“Matemadanda has actually exposed this plot to plant guns at my farm.”

Sibanda said he believed in peace, adding that he accepted the persecution that he was facing from his former colleagues.

“I have been preaching peace,” he said.

“I don’t believe in weapons. I believe in ideas. I believe ideas are more worthy than weapons.

“I like to enter in a battle of minds, ideas and ideology than physical fights that can only cause unnecessary deaths and pain to ordinary people.”

Sibanda was expelled from Zanu PF after he threatened to mobilise youths, war veterans and women to confront President Robert Mugabe over the purging of party members on charges of plotting to unseat the ruling party strongman.

He faces charges of undermining Mugabe’s authority.

“I accept the situation that I am in now,” Sibanda said.

“I never knew that when I worked as a security aide of the late Vice-President Joshua Nkomo in the 1980s, when he was being forced to escape for his safety, that was a precursor of what was to happen to me later.

“What is four years and 11 months that I dedicated to the party, compared to decades that Nkomo sacrificed during the liberation struggle only to become a fugitive, fleeing for his safety as he was being persecuted?

“It gives a clear picture of the kind of people that we are dealing with.”

Matemadanda could not be reached for comment.

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