Revived Zapu leader Dumiso Dabengwa says the vision of former Vice President Joshua Nkomo of a truly liberated Zimbabwe where citizens enjoy all their freedoms, a booming industry and massive production on land, can only be achieved if there is a complete mindset shift among the current Zanu PF leadership.
Dabengwa said Father Zimbabwe, as the late vice president was affectionately known in political circles, sacrificed a lot including signing the Unity Accord just to save the killing of people in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces by the Korean-trained Fifth Brigade.
Dabengwa, who revealed that he never approved the Unity Accord calling it a “scandalous document”, said Nkomo had people at heart and that forced him to sign the Unity Accord unconditionally.
He said President Robert Mugabe put conditions for Nkomo to meet him.
"Nkomo was unhappy about what was going on in Zimbabwe at that time, especially the crackdown on his party by President Mugabe’s government. He was respected in all parts of the country."
Chinhoyi resident, Willie Nyambe, said Nkomo was more accommodative than Mr. Mugabe.
Nyambe said Nkomo wanted total freedom for Zimbabweans regardless of tribe and colour.
Another local resident, Adeline Huchu who grew up in Bulawayo, said Nkomo was not power hungry as all he wanted was to totally liberate Zimbabwe.
Dabengwa, who received military training in Russia, prompting people to call him the “Black Russian”, said Nkomo had a clear vision on proper and practical indigenization and the utilization of land by all people.
Sibongile Mgijima of Chikonohono in Chinhoyi, said Nkomo fought for genuine black empowerment and is well-remembered for his fight to have businessman, Strive Masiyiwa, get a mobile phone license.
A former ZIPRA freedom fighter, Elvis Moyo, said Nkomo’s vision to see a food secure Zimbabwe was seen in his initiation of various projects, including the acquisition of properties that included companies and farms under Nitram Properties and the Development Trust of Zimbabwe.
Moyo said Nkomo wanted former Zipra combatants and the generality of people to produce commodities on farms and then further process finished products for the local and international markets.
Dabengwa said although Nkomo tried hard to make the government of the day see the light he was labeled a “senile, bubbling old man”.