Today the 20th of February, the world witnessed the reality of the pain and anger, still bottled within the hearts of the people of Matabeleland at the occasion of the first meeting of Mnangagwa’s personal NPRC in Bulawayo.
The event was delayed for two hours owing to the late arrival of two members of the Comission, who were reported to have been diverted to another matter relevent to the commission.
At at round 10am, the business of the commission commenced with prayer by Pr Ndlovu of BICC who was the facilitator. He went on to ursher in the Commission chair lady, Mrs Chigwedere. She stood up to give introductions and explain how the commission was constituted and conceived. It was at this juncture that the MRP members stopped her abruptly and demanded an explanation on the reason and logic behind having a commission dominated by Shona people presiding over an ethinic genocide perpetrated by people of their ethinic origin. They made it clear to the commission chair that her commission was not welcome as it was perceived as a group of genocide perpetrators coming to play around with the emotions of the people of Matabeleland.
Mrs Chigwetere whose husband is roumored to have been an active Gukurahundist failed to respond as the audience drowned her efforts with the popular Ndebele song that says ‘ lingamashona lalibulalobaba’ translated as ” you Shonas were killing our fathers”.
All the attendees joined the defiance song, while lifting up placards that showed messages of the gruesomeness of Gukurahundi. The facilitating pastor tried in vain to quench the fires of protest as speaker after speaker took tothe podium to demand a Truth Commission before reconciliation.
Riot police in cars were seen descending on the venue before the defiant Mthwakazi Republic Party members and the general populace of Matabeleland ordered all Shona commissioners to be moved out of the venue, save for Commissioner Leslie Ncube. Ncube was also blamed though, for being a sell out and was spared by the fact that he belongs to the side of the victims, in terms of his ethnicity.
One youth, contrary to the Shona created rhetoric that Ndebeles were not educated, took to the stage and gave an intelligent and legal justification on why it was prudent for the Commissioners to leave.
The MRP president Mqondisi Moyo who was on his way from his rural home, 30km away from Bulawayo had to be called to come and reason with the defiant MRP members. On his arrival, he was given the podium, but could not calm the restless crowd. He told the Commissioners that he was not qualified to stand against the wishes of the people of Matabeleland. Eventually the Commissioners were ordered to go and the pastors helped them out.
One of the attendees, a Mr Mkandla had earlier told the Commissioners that he had warned Mugabe back then that there is a generation that would be born and would not tolerate their clamsy way of treating the Gukurahundi issue. He said he had warned him of a time bomb, and was now pleased to be vindicated on such a proven prophecy.
We are that generation. MRP is not here to pull a political stunt but to liberate our people. Like we said before, we demand on behalf of our people, a fresh Comission of inquiry headed by a neutral international judge, assisted by church led organizations like the CCJP.