First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa yesterday visited former president Canaan Banana’s widow, Janet, and national hero Dr Dumiso Dabengwa’s widow, Zodwa, as well as veteran freedom fighters here.
She visited Mrs Banana to thank her for the good work she did during her time as First Lady and proceeded to console Mrs Dabengwa who lost her husband last month.
The First Lady also visited war veterans Cdes David Mongwa “Sharpshoot” Moyo, Aaron Ndlovu and Jane Ngwenya.
She was accompanied by Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Minister Sithembiso Nyoni, Bulawayo Provincial Affairs Minister Judith Ncube and Bulawayo Metropolitan MP Priscilla Misihairabwi- Mushonga.
The First Lady gave blankets and food items to Mrs Banana and the three war veterans, who were pioneer guerrilla fighters during the liberation struggle.
When she arrived at Mrs Banana’s home in Southwold suburb, the former First Lady wept and expressed gratitude to the Amai Mnangagwa for the visit.
First Lady Mnangagwa said she had been yearning to visit Mrs Banana, whom she described as a humble and loving woman.
“I’m happy that I’ve visited the former First Lady today. To me she’s a mother. I used to follow her work during the time she was First Lady. I was young at the time and I admired the way she carried herself and conducted her duties as First Lady.
“She was a humble, quiet and loving woman who had so much respect for people. People admired her. I cherish the guidance she gave to the people of Zimbabwe and I pray to God to keep her healthy,” said Amai Mnangagwa.
The First Lady proceeded to Cde Moyo’s house in Emganwini before going to Fourwinds suburb to console Mrs Dabengwa.
She proceeded to Kensington to visit Cde Ndlovu and Coronation Home to see Cde Ngwenya.
Cde Ngwenya urged the people of Zimbabwe to work hand-in-hand with the Government to revive the economy.
She said the country’s leadership was chosen by the people and it was the same people who should work with the Government in rebuilding the nation.
Cde Ngwenya urged women not to be afraid to speak out and demand the services that they want from the Government because when the country has challenges, they are the most affected group.
After the visits, the First Lady met elderly people from Bulawayo at the Large City Hall, where she donated blankets and groceries and assured them that the Government will make sure that they don’t go hungry.
She assured elderly people of better living conditions, saying Government, through renewed economic policies, is working tirelessly to end the country’s financial challenges.
The groceries included rice, sugar, cooking oil and mealie-meal.
“Our elderly people are the ones who suffer the most when it comes to access to basic necessities.
“I’m here to encourage the elderly to be hopeful because our Government is making frantic efforts to get us out of the financial challenges we’re facing as a country,” said the First Lady.
Spouses of national heroes also attended the gathering at the Large City Hall and they included Mrs Gift Masuku, widow to ex-Zipra commander Lieutenant-General Lookout Masuku; Mrs Margaret Ncube, widow to Cde Misheck Velaphi Ncube; Mrs Thandiwe Nkala, widow to Cde Enos Nkala; Mrs Qhubekiso Mangena, widow to former Zipra commander General Alfred Nikita Mangena; Mrs Chipo Nyathi, widow to national hero Dr Isaac Nyathi and Mrs Sikhumbuzo Nkala, widow to war veterans leader, Cde Cain Nkala.
The families of former Zipra stalwarts Cde Jimmy Ntuta and Lazarus Nkala sent representatives.