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Chiwenga says govt seized with Gukurahundi issue, ‘solution is coming’

Vice President Constantino Chiwenga claims the government is seized with the issue of the Gukurahundi Massacres that claimed an estimated 20 000 innocent lives in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces in the early 1980s and “a solution will be found as we are all Zimbabweans”.

Traditional leaders in Matabeleland South have been repeating calls for government to publicly apologise for the Gukurahundi genocide which happened while President Emmerson Mnangagwa was the Minister of State Security.

Mnangagwa opened dialogue on the emotive subject, appointing a team of chiefs to lead the healing process but like his predecessor, the late former President Robert Mugabe, he has not offered any apology for the mass killings.

Chiwenga at the weekend faced victims of the Gukurahundi massacres during the burial of Chief Mabhikwa (Vusumuzi Khumalo) whose grandfather was killed in the genocide. He assured them that the government was working every day to make sure the issue was resolved.

“I heard the Reverend (Useni Sibanda) talking about unity and people of Zimbabwe uniting as Zimbabwe is a unitary State,” Chiwenga said.

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“He raised the issues which happened, which were bad and which we are looking into. The President and the Chief’s Council are dealing with these matters every time and a solution will be found as we are all Zimbabweans.”

Rev Sibanda had said: “I believe it’s time for Zimbabwe to be healed. It’s time for healing for Matabeleland. Time does not heal wounds but speaking the truth about what happened will heal this nation.”

In January this year, Matabeleland South provincial chiefs assembly chairperson Chief Masendu said Gukurahundi could not be wished away if the government fails to come in the open with an apology.

“Chiefs are the rightful people to handle the Gukurahundi issue because they belong to the people. We stay with them, they talk to us. What they want is an apology and compensation,” he said.

“Government must agree and openly apologise to the people. No other person can come from outside whom people can understand and relate to their issues confidently besides the chiefs.”