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Nkomo family hurt

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The son of the late Vice President and Father Zimbabwe, Joshua Mqabuko Nyongolo Nkomo, has blasted government for having “Nicodemously” erected the statue of the late veteran politician without consultations with his family.
Controversy continues to dog the erection of the statue which was put up on the night of Thursday. Information filtering through suggests the statue was erected between 2300 hours on Thursday and 0400 hours on Friday morning.
Bulawayo residents woke up to a new feature in the city centre, raising questions on when the statue had been put up. Questions have also arisen as to where and who made the statue amid suspicions the statue could have come from North Korea. Home Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi said earlier this year that Nkomo’s statue would come from North Korea.
Mohadi told NewsDay’s sister paper, The Standard, then that the statue would be delivered from North Korea where he had seen it being made.
Bulawayo residents said three men, suspected to be of Korean origin, were seen at the pedestal where the statue was to be erected discussing about the pedestal on Thursday morning.
The Zimbabwe National Army’s Fifth Brigade, which was behind the massacre of civilians in Matabeleland and the Midlands in the 1980s, was trained by North Koreans.
In an interview yesterday, Sibangilizwe Nkomo, the eldest son to the late veteran nationalist, said the family was not happy with the manner in which the whole statue saga had been handled by the government.
“Some of us are not happy really with the way this whole thing was done. It was brought without the knowledge of any of the Nkomo family members. It was put up at night. If it was something good for the family and for the whole of Matabeleland and Zimbabwe, if it was an honour for the role our father played to the liberation of Zimbabwe, then why did it have to be put up at night? What is being hidden from the eyes of the people?” asked Sibangilizwe.
He also questioned the choice of the cloth that covered the statue, saying the statue could have been best covered with a white cloth as compared to black.
To the Nkomo family, Sibangilizwe said, the black cloth depicts mourning and this was in deep contrast to the situation that should be prevailing at the moment.
“We take the black cloth as a sign of mourning. We should be celebrating that the works of our father have finally been recognised by the nation. Our preference for a cloth that would have been used to cover that statue is white and not black,” he said.

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