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New Zimbabwe VP John Nkomo Calls for Unity of Purpose in Government

Vice President Nkomo told VOA that he would work hard to ensure that the unity government brings about the change that is required in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe capped off a drama-filled weekend congresso of his ZANU-PF party by swearing former party chairman John Nkomo on Monday as one of the country’s two vice presidents.

Nkomo, 75, took the oath of office in the presence of dignitaries including Vice President Joice Mujuru, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai and Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara.

At the congress Mugabe lashed out at party members for fanning factionalism which he said was destroying the former ruling party.

Nkomo is a former senior member of the PF-ZAPU liberation party which entered a unity government with Mr. Mugabe’s ZANU in 1987 to end the so-called Gukurahundi purges in Matabeleland and Midlands.

In an exclusive interview with VOA Studio 7 reporter Blessing Zulu, Vice President Nkomo vowed to work hard to ensure that the unity government will bring about the change that is needed in Zimbabwe.

Nkomo is widely considered to be a ZANU-PF moderate and is respected even by the former opposition Movement for Democratic Change.