By ZBC Reporter
President Emmerson Mnangagwa has commended the late national hero and Roman Catholic Priest Father Emmanuel Francis Ribeiro for serving the country with distinction during and after the liberation struggle.
The President who was at the Ribeiro family home in Highfield, Harare this Saturday to pay his condolences chronicled how the late cleric facilitated his removal from the death row during the liberation struggle.
Father Ribeiro would constantly visit us when we were in prison in the condemned section. After discussing with us about church he would also tell us about the liberation struggle. He facilitated my removal from death row before i then spent ten years,he said.
President Mnangagwa said after the liberation struggle, Farther Ribeiro worked with government on various initiatives and projects.
After the liberation struggle we met again with Father Ribeiro and we were so happy. We then started research because he had books of evidence with ages of those who had been hanged at prisons. We now have the history and i would say people perished in prisons.
Farther Ribeiro died this Thursday at the age of 86 after succumbing to pneumonia and was declared a national hero.
Apart from being a Priest, Father Ribeiro was an author and composer.
He wrote books that include Muchadura, Tonderai and Ndakaitei and composed 17 Roman Catholic hymns.
He was also head of the committee which penned Zimbabwe’s national Anthem and was part of the team which designed Zimbabwe’s national flag.
He will be buried at National heroes acre on Monday 21 June 2021.
All those who are going to attend or go to the heroes acre should be COVID-19 tested and bring the certificate.