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THE Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association has resolved to mobilise its membership to rally behind Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko.

The resolution was reached at a recent executive meeting of the ZNLWA in Harare where there was consensus on the need to protect the integrity of the Presidium of the revolutionary ZANU-PF party.

ZNLWA national secretary for information and publicity Cde Mandi Chimene said war veterans felt they could not just stand and watch while the person of the Vice President was under attack from some charlatans who purposely left the revolutionary party to pursue their own tribal political projects.

“At our first executive meeting after being elected into office, members resolved that we must vigorously rally behind Vice President Mphoko in all the country’s provinces particularly in Matabeleland where Dr Dumiso Dabengwa, who left ZANU-PF on his own now wants to preach to us who should become our leaders,” said Cde Chimene.

Cde Chimene, who was recently appointed Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs, said war veterans were the custodians of the revolution that catapulted the country’s independence from colonial minority rule and as such are always vigilant when the revolution is under attack.

Apparently miffed by the appointment of Cde Mphoko as Vice President, Dr Dabengwa recently went on an offensive casting aspersion on the VP’s involvement in the central intelligence department during the early years of the country’s independence.

In a recent rebuttal of Dr Dabengwa’s utterances, ZANU-PF Politburo member and Government spokesperson Professor Jonathan Moyo said the appointment of VP Mphoko was done in accordance with Article 4 of the Unity Accord.

Prof Moyo said people should go beyond thinking of unity in tribal terms and expressed serious reservations on the way Matabeleland was being regionalised and tribalised by politicians who have not done anything for the region beyond working for their own personal benefit.

“The time has come for Matabeleland to become national in both its character and content.

“VP Mphoko brings that promise in a very refreshing way.

“As such, he does not need to be pulled down but supported by everyone — beginning with the people of Matabeleland.

“As VP Mphoko’s former commander in Zipra during the liberation struggle, Dr Dabengwa will do himself good by leading the way in support of VP Mphoko to make a positive change not only in the region but in the country,” Prof Moyo said.

Another Politburo member Dr Sikhanyiso Ndlovu also weighed in saying it was naiumlve to expect VP Mphoko to have publicly participated in politics when he was in the diplomatic and state security services.

Source : The Herald