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Commemoration message on the late former Vice President Cde Dr Joshua Mqabuko Nyongolo Nkomo

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Message by His Excellency President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Today, 1st July 2023, our great nation, including our brothers and sisters in the Diaspora join the Nkomo family in remembering the late national hero, Dr Joshua Mqabuko Nyongolo Nkomo, on the 24th anniversary of his death. Dr Joshua Nkomo served as Vice President of the Republic of Zimbabwe from 1987 until his untimely demise on 1st July 1999.

The late former Vice President, affectionately known as “Chibwechitedza”, “Umdala Wethu”, “Father Zimbabwe”, was a trade unionist, a revered nationalist and a Pan-African freedom fighter who committed his entire adult life to the decolonization and emancipation of the people of Zimbabwe.

He was a selfless, fearless and committed fighter who preached love, unity, peace, hard work and sacrifice.

Father Zimbabwe will be remembered as a colossal political figure who, together with his compatriots, gallantly fought and defeated racial injustice, oppression and servitude. He belonged to an early crop of trade unionists who spurned subtle politics for a full-fledged armed struggle in seeking to liberate their motherland.

Despite prolonged political incarceration, Dr Nkomo never compromised on his revolutionary ideals and served as the inaugural Minister of Home Affairs in the newly Independent Zimbabwe in 1980. He later ascended to the post of Second Secretary of ZANU (PF) and Vice President of Zimbabwe in 1987, following his role as co-architect of the historic Unity Accord which was signed on 22nd December 1987.

Father Zimbabwe left a huge footprint on the Zimbabwean political landscape, an enduring legacy of peace and the lofty values of Unhu/Ubuntu.

The memories of this doyen of African liberation, a gentle giant and a passionate nation-builder, shall forever be etched in our hearts.

May the soul of the late Umdala Wethu continue to rest in eternal peace.

Long live our unity, peace and freedom!

Long live Zimbabwe!