Nkomo street saga rages

Zapu yesterday condemned delays by Bulawayo City Council and the government to rename Main Street after the late Vice-President Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo, saying the issue had been politcised.

Mqondisi Moyo, a Zapu youth assembly national executive member, said government and the local authority must stop shifting blame for the delays and ensure the issue was resolved immediately.
“The renaming of the street after Father Zimbabwe is long overdue,” he said.

“Government and council must stop accusing each other about the delay.

“Thirteen years after Nkomo died there is still nothing to show that he was a great leader.
“Anything that is associated with him is frustrated, but look at what is happening in Harare, a road has been named after Solomon Mujuru, a person who died last year.”

Harare City Council has proposed to rename Enterprise Road after the late Zanu PF politburo member.

Other roads would also be renamed after lumuniries from different fields.

Moyo was reacting to reports that government was insisting that the local authority had been given the go-ahead to rename the street after Nkomo while council was saying it had not been granted the authority.

The idea to rename the street was first mooted in 2002, three years after Nkomo’s death, but to date nothing has been done.

Bulawayo governor Cain Mathema told State media the MDC-T-dominated council was responsible for the delay.

“As far as I am concerned, there is no longer a need for all this delay. We really have to honour Dr Nkomo,” he said.

“If council wants to rename the street tomorrow, we will gladly stand by them.”

The government has often come under fire for failing to honour Nkomo’s legacy after failing to ensure that Ekusileni Hospital in Bulawayo — a brainchild of the late Zapu leader — remains operational.

Delays in the upgrading of the Joshua Mqabuko International Airport have also been cited as another example that the government is not serious about preserving Nkomo’s legacy.

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