By Staff Reporter
WAR veterans have pledged to mobilise two million potential votes for Zanu PF and President Emmerson Mnangagwa ahead of the 2023 national elections.
Addressing Zanu PF supporters and war veterans in Gwanda, Matabeleland South, Douglas Mahiya, the Zanu PF secretary for war veterans said the pledge to mobilise the two million votes was in appreciation of a decision made by Mnangagwa to create a war veterans department in the party to cater for the needs of the former freedom fighters.
Mahiya now heads the department and sits in the Politburo.
“We have been recalled back to the party. The enemy was taking advantage of our absence on the main political platform for over 40 years to defend our side,” Mahiya said.
“We urge all war veterans to join the war veterans wing in order for us to win the 2023 elections. The department will look into the welfare of civil servants,” he added.
Zimbabwe is expected to hold its watershed elections in 2023.
War veterans have in the past been used as foot soldiers in Zanu PF in some cases perpetrating violence and murdering perceived opposition supporters with the police turning a blind eye.
At the start of the controversial land reform programme, the war veterans led the violent process.
The militant Zanu PF support base is blamed for a violent run-up to the 2000, 2005 general elections and the 2008 presidential run-off poll against perceived opposition members.
Mahiya reflected on bitter memories how war veterans were ill-treated under the then President Robert Mugabe rule.
He said the Zanu PF leadership under Mugabe disrespected them with then Zanu PF political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere labelling them bogus, and a bunch of drunkards.
Kasukuwere is now in self-exile in South Africa.