President calls unrepentant Western countries to order

04 Oct, 2022 - 00:10 0 Views
President calls unrepentant Western countries to order President Mnangagwa addresses mourners at the National Heroes Acre during the burial of national hero Cde Highten Nkomo in Harare yesterday. — Picture: Believe Nyakudjara

The Herald

Political Editor 

PRESIDENT Mnangagwa has told Western countries that still maintain a confrontational approach to Zimbabwe through the maintenance of illegal and unjust sanctions that it’s time they turn a page because the country is a friend to all and an enemy to none.

This comes as member states of the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) will on October 25 join hands in calling for the removal of the illegal economic sanctions that have bled Zimbabwe for two decades, and constricted economic growth.

In his eulogy at the burial of national hero Cde Heighten Nkomo at the National Heroes Acre in Harare yesterday, President Mnangagwa said Zimbabweans should draw inspiration from their liberators who sacrificed life and limb, and set the pace for the independence and freedoms enjoyed to this day.

The late Cde Nkomo was among a crop of liberation war stalwarts who were sent to the then Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR, now Russia) in 1972 to train in Military Engineering at the Simferopol Academy, specialising in Military Reconnaissance and Intelligence.

“Zimbabwe is most grateful to countries such as the Soviet Union (now Russian Federation), China, Cuba, Romania, Bulgaria and the former Yugoslavia that provided training, financial and moral support to our armed liberation struggle. 

“To this day, that support remains the bedrock that anchors our unshakeable cordial and fraternal relations with these countries. Our erstwhile colonisers now come back to us feigning to be human rights champions, only by day as by night they continue to pursue nefarious programmes to subvert our independence, sovereignty and freedom.

“The then Soviet Union, China and other countries demonstrated their true friendship and respect for our freedom and human rights by helping us to attain our independence and sovereignty. These countries pursue friendly, progressive and win-win relations never ever seeking to degrade our self-identity. 

“Hence, we call upon some of the Western countries pursuing a confrontational approach in relating with Zimbabwe to turn a new leaf. Guided by our Engagement and Re-engagement Policy, Zimbabwe is committed to be a friend to all and an enemy of none.”

At the just ended United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, Zimbabwe received a major boost in the fight against the illegal sanctions that were imposed as punishment for the land reform programme that redressed unjust colonial land distribution patterns that favoured a tiny minority white population.

President Mnangagwa paid tribute to the solidarity shown by the African Union, Sadc and some African leaders who called for the unconditional lifting of sanctions in their speeches at UNGA. 

“Zimbabwe is, thus, most grateful to the countries including the African Union and SADC that buttressed our call for the unconditional removal of the illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe at the just-ended 77th Session of the United Nations General Assembly. Whilst those who imposed these sanctions continue with this economic strangulation, punishing us for reclaiming our land, let us remain united as one people, all pulling in one direction.”

The late Cde Nkomo was one of the early Veterans who chose to fight, rather than submit to colonial injustices and joined the liberation 

struggle in its formative years.

“When the Second Republic calls for developing Zimbabwe, leaving no one and no place behind, we should all take a leaf from the exemplary works and deeds of the likes of Cde Nkomo and many of our departed war veterans. He never discriminated but assisted cadres that came from every corner of Zimbabwe for the arduous and gruelling military assignments that awaited them in the armed liberation struggle.”

The late Cde Nkomo was part of the first group of ZIPRA cadres to be trained at Morogoro, Tanzania between 1969 and 1970. He trained alongside the likes of Major General (Rtd) Jevan Maseko, Brigadier General (Rtd) Tjile Nleya, Colonel (Rtd) Masala Sibanda, Stanley Nleya (who are all late), Brigadier General (Rtd) Abel Mazinyane and Kenneth Murwira.

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