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VP Nkomo must apologise for Matabeleland jibe


I was one of the people who believed that the MDC-T led Bulawayo City Council was wrong in denying Vice-President John Nkomo the Freedom of the City accolade.

Recent utterances by John Nkomo to the effect that people from Matabeleland are lazy vindicated council action and decision.

The remarks by the Acting President were not only careless and callous, but also insensitive, nefarious, frivolous and laced with poisonous rhetoric.

This comes hardly a few weeks after Cain Mathema, the inappropriately named resident minister and governor for Bulawayo Metropolitan Province, stated in an article epitomised by more heat than light that marginalisation of Matabeleland was a myth.

Not to be outdone, once respectable Simon Khaya Moyo, the Zanu PF national chairman, joined in the growing circus of political clowns by accusing people from the region of being cry babies.

I am not prone to dwelling on personalities and character assassination, but surely, these pronouncements by senior politicians from Matabeleland need to be dismissed with the contempt which they richly deserve.

Only a person from Mars could have made such statements which would tend to turn foolishness into an institution.

I do not wish to insult anybody, especially the three gentleman, some of whom I once held in high regard. They now seem to have personal delusion and clouded judgment.

I will not dwell on the spirited attempts by Nkomo, Moyo and Mathema to turn foolishness into an institution.

The three personify the failure by Zanu PF to understand the aspirations, experiences and struggles of the long-suffering people of Matabeleland who were first subjected to over 100 years of white colonial rule and have been subjected to another 31 years of misrule by a black government which had almost decimated them during the prolonged “moment of madness” from 1983-1987.

I do not wish to be emotional about this trying issue of Matabeleland, which saw a black government slaughtering more people after independence than the Smith regime had done during the war for independence but quite clearly, it is difficult not to be emotional about such an issue.

How can Nkomo have the temerity of accusing Ndebeles of being lazy, cry babies when his government has presided over the wholesale genocide and economic degradation of Bulawayo?

It is a fact that Bulawayo prospered more under Smith than under President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF.

Is Vice-President Nkomo oblivious of the fact that Bulawayo developed more under Smith during a time when Rhodesia was under sanctions for the Unilateral Declaration of Independence?

Bulawayo had since the days of the Federation become the industrial hub of Zimbabwe (then Rhodesia).

One of the largest meat-canning factories, Lemco, was for a long time operational in West Nicholson, bolstered by a ranch of several hundred thousand acres which provided meat for the factory.

The city was headquarters of the National Railways of Zimbabwe and the Cold Storage Commission, both of which have been reduced to a shell by Zanu PF-aligned kleptocrats masquerading as technocrats.

It is an act of cardinal mischief for anybody and a government minister especially, and a resident minister in particular, to suggest that the marginalisation of Matabeleland is mythical.

Certainly, one would have to come from outer space not to appreciate the fact that the marginalisation of Matabeleland is a practical reality.

It is a monumental scandal that government ministers from outside Matabeleland have seen what so-called leaders from the region itself have failed to realise and acknowledge.

In May this year, MP for Mhondoro-Ngezi Bright Matonga was quoted in the media encouraging people from the region to reject marginalisation and fight against people imposing themselves on Matabeleland.

He was joined by Indigenisation and Youth Empowerment minister Saviour Kasukuwere who declared that the Government would not allow Bulawayo to die.

Even Transport and Communication minister Nicholas Goche expressed concern about the snail’s pace development of the Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo Airport.

Sadly Nkomo, Moyo and Mathema have constructed their own reality which is steeped in delusion and insensitivity. Mathema should not take his obsession with mythology into the real domain and province of practical reality.

There are hundreds, if not thousands of entrepreneurs from Matabeleland who have tried to start businesses and access loans to no avail.

How can such hardworking and innovative people be accused of being lazy by leaders who are bent on misleading the nation?

Even business mogul Delma Lupepe was in the press arguing that loans offered by banks were short-term and only catered for imports of raw materials instead of replacement of obsolete equipment.

It appears the utterances by the three very senior Zanu PF officials from Matabeleland are expression of party policy judging by the consistency with which that party has opposed popular governance models (in Matabeleland) such as devolution of power.

Do Nkomo and his acolytes believe the whole region of Matabeleland is deluded in its demand for devolution of power?

Do they believe that over two million people are wrong about the marginalisation of the region and do they in their collective wisdom or lack thereof, believe they are correct?

Surely, this must rank as the highest form of delusion and irrelevance by people who have become insulated from reality.

What about the allocation of funds from toll gates?

How can any sane person justify the allocation of over $2 million to Zvimba and Bindura at the expense of busy roads such as Beitbridge Road which received a mere fraction of funding?

Moyo, Nkomo and Mathema and the rest of the Zanu PF cabal must publicly apologise for their statements which are seemingly a perpetuation of the legacy of Gukurahundi.

They are behaving like house slaves during the era of slavery in America.

When the master’s house was burning, the field slave would celebrate but, the house slave would run to the master and say: “Master our house is burning.”

We are tired of these house slaves who are revelling in the oppression of their own people.
Mayibuye iZimbabwe.

Dumisani can be contacted on dumisani.nkomo@gmail.com

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