It was indeed excruciating, hurtful and painful to learn in the wee hours of the morning about the depressing demise of General “Rex Nhongo” Solomon Mujuru.
Reports are that he was burnt to ashes at his farmhouse in Beatrice. His farmhouse was burnt too.
A striking feature of the enigmatic General Mujuru was the apparently carefree life he led. He shunned elaborate protocol and security around him was always very thin or non-existent.
Another of Zimbabwe’s liberation heroes has gone. Initial reports say that there were no aides around him when the fire engulfed the house.
Deaths of this nature are not uncommon in this country but because of General Mujuru’s high profile in national politics, in which he was considered a kingmaker and leader of a faction, a thorough investigation is required. His death could turn out to be more than just a mere accident.
Whatever the cause of his death, Zimbabwean politics will from now trek a new path. He was one of the few Zanu PF politicians who tolerated varying views and was reportedly vociferous in politburo meetings chaired by President Robert Mugabe.
While his peers in the party were comfortable with toadying behaviour, General Mujuru was not afraid to speak out and did not mince his words.
He was no doubt one of the country’s most illustrious military leaders of his time.
The illustrious General Mujuru was a political pillar of modern Zimbabwe, especially post-independence.
A very unassuming character who would not bat an eyelid to see the people of Zimbabwe free from colonial shackles and lead the nation to self-determination.
Although the General was very shy, generally, he was extremely effective behind the country’s treacherous political waters filled with shrewd politicians.
He too was a shrewd politician and tactician and complex in character. No one could have claimed to have really known the General.
He kept his cards close to the chest and remained unpretentious and down to earth even after he left the top rank in the army to enter civilian life.
Strictly speaking, the General had a profound and weighty security background which no rightful-thinking decent person can doubt.
A very capable officer, the General was a model leader and astute businessman and a source of inspiration to his juniors and peers.
It is not easy to leave the feeding trough and join civilian life, but the gallant soft-spoken son of the soil who stammered did that with great ease.
The General commanded a lost of respect from Zimbabweans across the political divide, not so much what we say about the other political gladiators masquerading as pastors, reverends and converts.
In General Mujuru’s death, the nation has lost a quiet, unassuming, but highly regarded illustrious soldier and fighter of the liberation struggle.
We pray that God bestows fortitude to the bereaved family and may his soul rest in peace in Heaven.