It's time to tackle Gukurahundi once and for all

May 15, 2010
TimesLive

A matter that is not resolved in the right manner is never buried and it
never dies. Take for example the slaughter of Armenian people by the Ottoman
(Turkish) army in 1895-96 and 1909.

The Turkish government denies that genocide ever took place. The reality of
the matter is that the matter will always be around and will cause problems.
That is the case with the issue of Gukurahundi in Zimbabwe. When Zimbabwe
became independent there was a never a proper sit-down to say, okay, what
were we fighting for and how do we reconcile what we were fighting for with
what's obtained on the ground?

How do the blacks in general and the war veterans in particular move past
the fact that for decades whites had been oppressing them and humiliating
them in their own country. The chickens came home to roost in 2000 and the
world cried foul. What the world forgot was that for decades a wrong had
been done and nothing had been done to right that wrong.

Julius Malema tends to overrun his mouth sometimes, but in his rantings does
he not raise valid points? The problem is that the likes of Malema come to
Zimbabwe and praise Mugabe without thinking twice of what he did in
Matabeleland in the '80s.
The world and Mugabe seem to have forgotten that a wrong was done in
Matabeleland and nothing was done to right that wrong.

While we are constantly reminded of the wrongs that the whites did before
1980, everyone, except of course the Ndebeles, have forgotten that 20 000 or
more Ndebeles and moderate Shonas were murdered. And if nothing is done to
right the wrong, we will never move past that dark episode.

The inviting of the North Korean national soccer team to camp in Zimbabwe by
Zanu-PF shows an irritating amount of arrogance.

We have not moved past Gukurahundi and the problem cannot be wished away.

Recently, the visual artist Owen Maseko was arrested for allegedly insulting
Mugabe in his exhibition Sibathontisele. But we all know it was for daring
to raise the issue of Gukurahundi. Late last year, my play Poetic Journey
was disrupted by Zanu-PF loyalists because it too touched on this sensitive
issue.

The Zimbabwean government, or better still commander in chief of Zimbabwe
defence forces, Comrade Robert Gabriel Mugabe, should realise that they have
to deal with the issue of Gukurahundi. And by dealing with it I don't mean
throwing everyone into jail or abducting the vocal members of the Ndebele
society in the dead of night.
I for one lost my father to Gukurahundi and I think imprisoning Mugabe would
be revenge, which pollutes the soul. I would prefer a truth and
reconciliation commission. The fact that there is no acknowledgement of the
matter is rather irritating.

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