PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe has little respect for Zimbabwe’s former fighters and is likely to pass the baton to a civilian, former Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial chairperson, Temba Mliswa claimed.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA
Mliswa told journalists at a Press briefing on Monday that veterans of the liberation struggle have themselves to blame for the situation Zanu PF finds itself in.
“They heckled with (the late Mozambican President) Samora Machel for three months over Mugabe’s eligibility to lead the struggle and the fighters. Machel told them he did not trust Mugabe, but they went against his wise counsel to appoint him leader,” he said.
Mliswa said Mugabe was not a war veteran, hence, he has little regard for them.
“They appointed a civilian and now he is going to leave power to his wife – also a civilian. Mugabe is not a war veteran, so he does not respect them or their opinion,” the former Hurungwe West lawmaker said.
After his famed crossing into Mozambique in 1975 to join the then guerrilla fighters, Mugabe was reportedly restricted to the coastal town of Quilimane by a sceptical Machel, before he was accepted as Zanu leader by military leaders, among them the late Solomon Mujuru and Josiah Tongogara.
A special congress held in Chimoio in 1977 installed Mugabe as Zanu leader, before his triumphant return to lead the country to independence in 1980.
Mliswa urged Mugabe to accept gays and lesbians so the country can access foreign funding.
“This idea of grandstanding about the issue of homosexuals does not help us. We all know that there are people sitting in high offices, with multi-lateral institutions who are gays. These are the same people we expect to give the green-light to the release of funding into the country, but then we turn around and berate them,” he said.
“I have nothing against gays, but I do not like the hypocrisy being shown by the system. They work with gays, but then claim to hate them.”