By Tapiwanashe Chiriga
Thirty-three years ago on this day, the country’s then two major political parties signed an agreement that has since been named the Unity Accord to end the violent, brutal, genocidal and savage massacre of Zimbabwean citizens mostly from the western half of the country by the government of Robert Mugabe.
The Zimbabwe National Students Union commemorates this crucial day in the history of our country even at a time when the nation is deeply divided and polarized thanks to the prevailing toxic politics in our beautiful country.
On this day we honour Dr Joshua Nkomo for letting go of everything in order to save lives and the country.
We remember the 20 000+ citizens who were murdered after being arrogantly labelled cockroaches and all derogatory names by men who have since enjoyed the impunity and safety of stolen power.
We are reminded today that a large number of our people are still greatly affected by Gukurahundi and are still waiting for closure while some cannot access identity documents.
Today 33 years after the Unity Accord, our country is deeply polarized thanks to the self-serving, divisive and toxic politics prevalent in our country. Our people are suffering chiefly because the social contract is torn, tattered and trampled, thanks to the poverty in thought and the deficit in leadership that define the people in charge of the affairs of our country.
Thirty-three years after the Unity Accord and forty years after independence, Zimbabwe has not yet transformed from the divided COUNTRY we inherited to the united lovely NATION that we deserve and desire.
The Unity that the Accord sought to build has been relegated to political rhetoric that only exists in long uninspiring speeches. It is apparent that the only goal of the Accord that the current occupant of the Presidency is determined to fulfil is the establishment of a one-party state.
Zimbabwe has to and needs to be united for her to progress and become better for her citizens. That unity however is more than rhetoric and requires a genuine process of National Healing that is characterized by truth telling by all, the end of the impunity of human rights violators, justice and closure for the victims and survivors of all the tragic moments of our dark past.
We owe it to ourselves and the future to UNITE Zimbabwe for her to transform into an inclusive, better and democratic NATION. We have to and WILL UNITE against those that have appropriated amongst themselves the national cake and arrogated themselves with the stolen powers to destroy our beautiful Zimbabwe.
We will UNITE and TRIUMPH against tyranny because as Dr Nkomo said “This country will not die, young people will SAVE it”
ZINASU remains firmly determined in pursuing the vision of an inclusive and democratic Zimbabwe with students as integral stakeholders where students concerns are addressed and academic freedom upheld
For and on behalf of the Zimbabwe National Students Union.
Tapiwanashe Chiriga, Secretary General, +263778402734