From George Maponga in Masvingo
The Zanu-PF national leadership has read the riot act to war veterans here over apparent lack of unity as evidenced by the existence of two leaders claiming to be chairpersons of the war veterans’ association in the province.
Cdes Tendeukai Chinooneka and Ignatius Murindi are both purporting to be bona fide chairpersons of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association in Masvingo.
The move has prised apart the war veterans’ body into two groups with each group rooting for one of the pair, a situation blamed for plunging the association into chaos.
Speaking during the Zanu-PF Masvingo provincial inter-district conference meeting at Masvingo Polytechnic on Monday, ruling party National Chair Cde Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri chided Masvingo war veterans for having two chairpersons.
She said genuine war veterans as loyal members of the party were supposed to promote unity and should move swiftly to rectify the anomaly.
“We hear there are two chairpersons for war veterans here in Masvingo and I want to say that is unacceptable. Such a situation reflects badly on you and should be urgently rectified so that there is sanity within the war veterans ranks in this province,” she said.
“We want you (war veterans) to show leadership and lead by example so please correct that problem we can’t countenance divisions amongst our war veterans, that problem should be urgently rectified so that you all work in unison.”
Cde Muchinguri-Kashiri reiterated Government’s commitment to improving the welfare of war veterans and collaborators in recognition of the key role they played in the country’s liberation.
The Zanu-PF National Chair assured war veterans and war collaborators that 25 percent of farms that will be repossessed at the end of the ongoing land audit will be reserved for them.
She expressed dismay that there were some war veterans alleged to be working with MDC-Alliance leader Mr Nelson Chamisa to denigrate the revolutionary Zanu-PF Government saying she doubted whether such people were genuine war veterans.
“We hear there are some war veterans that are working with (MDC-Alliance leader Mr Nelson) Chamisa and he actually confirmed as much saying they took part in the drafting of a petition that was recently produced by the opposition, but the big question is that are these so-called war veterans genuine?
“Can genuine war veterans who sacrificed life and limb to free Zimbabwe from colonial tyranny work with Chamisa? This is what we want to establish,” she said.
Cde Muchinguri-Kashiri reminded war veterans of their obligation to be the last line of defence for the revolution.
In Masvingo, Cdes Murindi and Chinooneka are both adamant they were bona fide chairpersons of the war veterans’ association in the province.
It remains to be seen whether the warring leaders will close ranks and rally behind one chairperson for the war veterans’ association to pull in the same direction.