Chipinge speaks on Rev Ndabaningi Sithole’s hero conferment


PEOPLE in Chipinge have spoken on the conferment as national hero of one of the founding fathers of Zimbabwe, the late Rev Ndabaningi Sithole.

This follows his recognition more than two decades after his death without being officially honoured as a national hero by the state due to some differences with the powers of that day. Now, all that is history. The late reverend has received his honours.

The late nationalist, who was buried at Freedom Farm in Mt Selinda, Chipinge, was recognised on Saturday, 10 June 2023, when he was posthumously conferred hero status as the co-founder of Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU). This gesture has been applauded by people of Manicaland.

In a speech read on his behalf by Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs, Hon Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri, His Excellency President Dr Emmerson Mnangagwa, indicated that he has set the nation on a sound footing after some distortions of Rev Ndabaningi’s heroism.

“It is undeniable that both records and actions by the Reverend make him a hero par excellence. It is this realization that the sitting Head of State and President of ZANU PF found it prudent to face and reveal the truth,” he said.

The late reverend’s family appreciated President Mnangagwa for the honorary privilege he rendered to Rev Ndabaningi Sithole as a hero and co-founder.

“The conferment of a hero status to the founding father of ZANU has marked the first step and correction of long overdue distorted history of Zimbabwe” said Siphiso Sithole, daughter to the late reverend.

Traditional leadership and liberation war icons in Chipinge who spoke to this publication are concurring with the presidium on honouring the late reverend.

“In spite of the historical distortions and injustices that Reverend Ndabaningi had betrayed sons and daughters in Mozambique when he actually fled for his life to Malawi, it’s true that the ZANU founding father Sithole suffered character assassination,” said village head Mwandeka.

“As people of Manicaland and Zimbabwe at large, we have acknowledged the step taken by His Excellency President Mnangagwa for correct what was previously distorted for decades. Some streets should be named after Sithole starting from Chipinge to the rest of the country. If we have Kwame Nkrumah, Herbert Chitepo, Josiah Tongogara having street names, then our own son should follow suit,” said Reuben Magaa Dhlakama.

“A number of war veterans who include Alison Bandama and Orbet Bote and died wishing Rev Ndabaningi Sithole to be recognized as a hero for his immense contribution in the liberation struggle. Their wish has now been fulfilled,” said Persuade Bandama.

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