Regional allies saluted in attaining Independence President Mnangagwa addresses Politburo members at ZANU PF Headquarters in Harare yesterday. — Picture: Tawanda Mudimu.

Fungi Kwaramba-Political Editor

AHEAD of this year’s Independence Day celebrations, President Mnangagwa has paid tribute to neighbouring countries such as Mozambique, Zambia, Tanzania, and Botswana for the invaluable support they rendered until the attainment of Uhuru in 1980.

On Sunday Zimbabwe celebrates its 41st Independence on the background of a successful agriculture season as well as rapid infrastructural development projects that have been implemented by the Second Republic towards industrialisation and economic transformation.

In his address at the 351st ordinary session of the Politburo yesterday, the President said Independence Day offers Zimbabwe an opportunity to reflect on the supreme sacrifices made by the country’s heroines and heroes in liberating the country from colonial rule.

“Zimbabwe is forever grateful for the international solidarity and support we received during the protracted war for our independence. In the region, we had invaluable material, logistical, diplomatic, and political support from Zambia, Tanzania, and Botswana, until the ultimate defeat of the exclusionary and oppressive minority rule. As a Party, we remain emboldened by the Pan-African ideals of collective peace and harmony as well as the belief that unity is fundamental for sustainable economic, social, and political progress, in our region and on the continent,” he said.

And ahead of the 2023 elections, the President said the party structures must continue to diligently implement the people-oriented programmes to ensure production and productivity in line with the Zanu PF ethos and values that also underpinned the liberation struggle.

“The 2023 Harmonised General Elections are fast approaching. Let us therefore continue tightening our belts and diligently implementing our party programmes with a greater sense of urgency. Our people and party membership must be kept informed, mobilised, and motivated to be productive towards improving their plight and the achievement of the goals we set out, in the 2018 People’s Manifesto.

“Party structures must remain intact. We cannot approach the next election with an assumed membership base. It is fundamental that we know the figures of those who will potentially vote for us at a disaggregated ward, constituency, and provincial level. Nothing must be left to chance.”

Turning to by-elections, the President said they must be conducted within the confines of internal democratic practices and provisions of the Zanu PF constitution, while at the same time observing WHO protocols.

“Values that promote discipline, unity, robust and mature political competition as well as the indivisibility of our revolutionary party must be guarded jealously. Meanwhile, I applaud the Herbert Chitepo School of Ideology for implementing a comprehensive and robust training programme for the DCC structures and new cadres joining the party.

“Our political DNA as the ruling party Zanu PF, with the vision for the future, is premised on the sanctity of our party constitution, rich revolutionary history and heritage, as well as the culture of engagement and dialogue. The ideals of our party, particularly patriotism, loyalty, discipline, and honesty must remain engrained in all of us. There is no room for malicious, divisive, corrupt and retrogressive tendencies within our rank and file membership.

“Reflections on our liberation principles and ethos, instruct that we must relate with the people, as water is to fish. The people, inclusive of women and youth, are a critical force in driving our development agenda. In today’s meeting, Politburo will, thus, receive reports from the war veterans, women and youth leagues on their activities and programmes,” the President said.

He added that the youths are the future of the nation and critical towards the achievement of the national Vision 2030 to become an upper middle-class economy.

“In order for this to happen, the youth should study beyond academic credentials, that way they equip themselves with contemporary knowledge and practical skills so that they emerge as technically competent cadres and philosophically sound leaders of tomorrow. This is more so, given the importance of innovation, invention, broad human capital and skills development as turbines towards sustainable socio-economic development and growth.”

Today, the President will launch the Second Phase of the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme in Mt Darwin as he continues to work around the clock to ensure that no part of the country is left behind in terms of development.

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