Zimbabwe: Activists Pile Pressure Over Gukurahundi

A BULAWAYO-based pressure group Ibhetshu LikaZulu has called on the government to go a step further in addressing the Gukurahundi issue and account for victims that were abducted and never seen again.

The government has offered to facilitate exhumations and reburials of Gukurahundi victims as part of measures to address the 1980's mass killings.

This followed a meeting President Emmerson Mnangagwa had with Matabeleland civic groups and clergy under the banner Matabeleland Collective held at the State House in Bulawayo early this year.

Ibhetshu LikaZulu coordinator Mbuso Fuzwayo said the pressure group is organising Unity Day activities to remember Gukurahundi victims, adding their main call is for the accounting for those that were kidnapped.

"We are busy preparing for the end of the Matabeleland Genocide, which we will hold on Unity Day," Fuzwayo said.

The country commemorates Unity Day on December 22 to celebrate the signing of a Unity Accord between PF Zapu and Zanu that marked the end of Gukurahundi, resulting in the formation of Zanu PF.

"We will have a peace march from the city centre to Stanley Square in Makokoba where activities such as testimonials from victims will be held," he said.

"While we appreciate what government has done to try and address the issue, however, there is silence on those that were abducted.

"No one is speaking to that; we want to amplify our voice on those who were abducted so that they are also accounted for."

Police have recently not been sanctioning street marches, particularly those organised by the opposition MDC citing many excuses such as fears that the opposition and other anti-government groups will hijack the proceedings.

The government once initiated a probe into the Gukurahundi massacres but the findings of the investigation by the Chihambakwe Commission of Inquiry were never made public.

There have been calls for Mnangagwa to ensure the release of the report in the spirit of promoting national healing,and to commit himself to compensating the victims' families and survivors.

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