War vets drop bid to remove Mugabe’s name from Harare airport

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By Robert Tapfumaneyi

THE Zimbabwe National War Veterans association (ZNLWVA) has dropped its bid to have former president Robert Mugabe’s name removed from the country’s main airport in Harare.

In an interview with, war veterans spokesman Douglas Mahiya said Mugabe had now acknowledged successor Emmerson Mnangagwa.

“… therefore, it’s not a good idea to continue fighting him,” said Mahiya.

The former Harare International Airport was renamed after Mugabe in November 2017, days before he was toppled by a military coup.

The decision was controversial at the time as some felt that too many places were already named after the veteran leader who is now 95 years old.

Mugabe then angered his former allies by calling a press conference just before last July’s crunch elections to announce that he would be voting for the opposition.

War veterans immediately said his name should be removed from the airport.

The airport, the ex-fighters argued at the time, “must evoke confidence to any would-be investor or tourist, rather to be greeted by a name notoriously associated with dictatorship and cruelty”.

Mahiya however said the petition to revert to Harare international airport had now been dropped.

“Look, we are a revolutionary party and we looked at a lot of things soon after handing over the petition to our patron (President Mnangagwa),” said Mahiya.

 “We also listened to our leadership; they said there are try to build the nation from decades of Mugabe’s rule.”

“As veterans of the liberation struggle, we are scholars of politics and a disciplined force and we listened to our leaderships as they try to preserve gains of independence and build a nation battered under Mugabe.”