OPPOSITION Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa has postponed the official launch of his pro-democracy foundation until after this year’s general elections to avoid being accused of using the programme as a campaign gimmick.
BY NQOBANI NDLOVU
The Dumiso Dabengwa Foundation was formed in July last year to push for restorative justice for victims of political violence, human capital development, promotion of democracy and constitutionalism, leadership, governance and provision of humanitarian aid to ex-combatants.
Dabengwa yesterday confirmed the postponement of the event to a date after this year’s elections.
“We were supposed to officially launch the foundation this month, but we decided that the launch be postponed till after the elections. This is so because we don’t want it to be confused and misunderstood as an election thing, or election project,” he said.
“We don’t want its activities to be confused with elections. What we did last year in July was to unveil it or simply put, we were merely publicising the idea of forming a foundation.
“The actual launch has not yet been done. It will be done after the elections.”
Recently, Dabengwa said the foundation was largely informed by his life experiences and will also push for redress and restorative justice for Gukurahundi victims, among others, adding the 1980s mass killings which claimed over 20 000 civilian lives in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces could not be “wished away”.
For President Robert Mugabe whose government has been blamed for the mass killings once described the massacres as a “moment of madness”.
Dabengwa said the wounds have not healed, adding his foundation will also seek to assist all victims of political violence in the country from the 1980s to the present date.