War vets reject new executive

Loughty Dube


A STORM is brewing in the war veterans association after a meeting called to introduce a new Bulawayo provincial executive at Entumbane on Sunday nearly degenerated into a fistfight as supporters of the old executive claimed bogus war veterans were being impo

sed on the province.

Riot police had to intervene at the meeting to stop the feuding groups from fighting amid futile pleas for calm from the chairman of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association reorganising committee, Andrew Ndlovu.

The meeting, which was called by Ndlovu to introduce a new committee led by Thoriso Moyo-Phiri, was also meant to discuss a proposed Bill that will change the war veterans association from a welfare organisation to a security body under the Ministry of Defence.

However, all hell broke loose when Ndlovu introduced the new executive to the war veterans as members queried their credentials and claimed that some of them were bogus.   

The new executive was elected in February this year after a vote of no confidence was passed in the Themba Ncube-led executive.

Ncube was suspended from Zanu PF together with six other party chairmen after he attended the  Tsholotsho meeting in December 2004 that President Mugabe said was a plot to block Joice Mujuru’s ascendancy to the vice-presidency.  

National war veterans chairman Jabulani Sibanda was also ousted from his post and since then the association has been plagued by infighting.

Dumiso Dabengwa, one of the restructuring committee members appointed by President Mugabe last year, said he had not been briefed on the latest incident since he was in Harare over the weekend.

“The incidents you are referring to occurred when I was in Harare and at the moment I cannot comment since I have not yet been briefed. I can only comment on the matter after I have been briefed,” Dabengwa said. 

Members of the association also said they did not recognise the new executive since there were no elections but members were handpicked.

President Mugabe last year appointed a restructuring committee that comprises Retired General Solomon Mujuru, Retired General Vitalis Zvinavashe, former Zipra supremo Dumiso Dabengwa and Ndlovu.