Adopting Socialism and Communism was adopting a culture of Goats: Guduza

Adopting Socialism and Communism was adopting a culture of Goats: Guduza
Published: 13 March 2017 | by Dr Mpiyezwe Churchill Guduza, MLF Vice President







Dear Dr Themba Bekezela Hwalima

Open Letter to Dr Hwalima: ‘Stop Dividing the people Mthwakazi’

Ekuhle ka Hwalima

1. Introduction

I have a problem with people who make false and unfounded accusations. In your open letter to me you have stated that you were ‘seriously’ and gravely concerned about my ‘attack’ on ‘Dr Joshua Mqabuko Kanyongolo Nkomo’. You have stated this without providing any evidence as to the nature, extent and venue of such an attack. If indeed your response was triggered by the open letter I wrote to Mr Ngqabutho Nicholas Mabhena, I have no hesitation in asking you to read it again (this time very carefully).

2. Contradictions

The more I read your letter, I was persuaded that there was virtually nothing in it by way of a concise argument that you are bringing to the fore. After the unfounded so-called ‘attack’, you proceeded to state that you ‘will not comment on the Mthwakazi Restoration Philosophy’ but at the same time ‘observe that’ I am ‘doing a lot of disservice to it’. What a contradiction! How can you not comment but still comment on it within the same vein?

Your letter is littered with false accusations, one after another and as such it is difficult to determine and indeed locate your thesis as a learned doctor. You accuse me of ‘dividing the people of Mthwakazi by rendering them enemies against each other’, but without stating how. Where is your evidence that I am dividing the people of Mthwakazi? How am I doing that? Where did I divide them? Are the people of Mthwakazi monolithic? Are they homogeneous? What exactly is it that you want to say? Why can you not be direct and make statements, points, arguments that are supported by evidence? Surely as a learned doctor you should be tearing apart my argument with facts and not with accusations.

3. Beginning ‘of the Mthwakazi problem’.

You have averred in your letter that the ‘problem of the people of Mthwakazi did not start with Dr Nkomo’, but with their eminent King Mzilikazi ka Mashobana’ whose ‘solution was to run up north as you know’. This again is a lot of hot air coming from a learned doctor. What problem are you referring to, Sir? A careful reading of my letter to Mr Mabhena should elucidate you about the historiography of Mthwakazi. My theme is consistently supported by facts. My thesis remains constant and it is this: the people of Mthwakazi would be free today had Dr Joshua ka Nyongolo Nkomo led them in that direction – period.

King Mzilikazi ka Mashobana did not run away from anything, neither did he run away from Mugabe’s Zimbabwe because it did not exist then, but rather he fell ill, then died and he is buried in the Matopo Hills. It really does not help commenting on things that you know nothing about because you will be exposed.

4.  “Disappearance of King Lobengula”

It is important to interrogate the literature before you come up with empty statements as well as assertions. For you to still believe that King Lobengula disappeared and was not killed by his adversaries (the British colonialists) is simply astonishing. What does the term ‘disappeared’ (wanyamalala) mean to you in the context of an armed conflict? What does it mean to you in the context of genocide and ethnic cleansing when people are targeted not for any other reason, but for who they are? Do you really believe that those people who disappeared during the Gukurahundi period were not killed?

One does not need to be a learned doctor to understand that King Lobengula was killed and his resting place hidden from his followers, simply to prevent any pilgrimage. Just like Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo, whose remains are hidden in Harare; even his true followers like yourself and others are all prevented from visiting his final resting place. This will still remain the case even if all of his combined followers wanted to evoke his spirit for the liberation of anything else. Harare is too far to make any pilgrimage possible. That was the intention of the powers that be, what is known as the law of intended consequences in order specifically to prevent any unintended consequences such as futuristic (utopian or otherwise) pilgrimage.

It was therefore not in the interests of the colonising power to kill and make public the burial of King Lobengula. If you still believe in that myth that he disappeared (wanyamalala’ then you will require some kind of concerted teaching in the art of interpreting, understanding and analysing historical evidence and not conjecture.  We have seen the same tactic applied by the Obama administration after they killed Osama Bin Laden. After they killed him, where did they bury him? The same equally applies to Gaddafi. He was killed whilst hiding under a bridge. But where is he buried? Do his followers know where and how far away in the dessert Gaddafi is buried?

5.  ‘Burden on my head and shoulders’

As a learned doctor, you further contradicts yourself  by saying that King Lobengula ‘s disappearance (to me death) ‘left a burden’ on my ‘head and shoulders’. Whilst I accept this challenge and am dealing with it the best way I can, why was this burden not left on Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo? Specifically, too, why was this burden not left on your ‘head and shoulders’, my learned doctor, ka Hwalima? But broadly and fundamentally, why was this burden not left on the heads and shoulders of all the people of Mthwakazi? If only the learned doctor can answer his own question, that might be very helpful indeed.

I am not sure whether as the good and learned doctor you knew exactly what you were referring to when you stated in your open letter that ‘zilokhu zi jamelene kuze kube lamhla’. Of course, I accept that only in the context of Mthwakazi formations challenging the continued Rule by Conquest of the British, and its proxy Zimbabwe. This has always been my argument and the argument of Mthwakazi Liberation Front in general, that had Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo continued with the historic legacy of King Lobengula ka Mzilikazi, bequeathed to all successive generations, of resisting European colonialism in defence of Mthwakazi – and not of an alien idea and country called Zimbabwe- the people of Mthwakazi could have long been free.

But then I would not know what the learned doctor was referring to by his assertion that ‘zilokhu zi jamelene’. This is because it is very difficult to follow any logic in the learned doctor’s argument. For example, you do concede that both Dr Nkomo and Chief Khayisa ‘were outwitted and defeated’ and proceed to say ‘the overwhelming evidence in this regard is that we are still where we were yesterday’. This to me now appears to be a struggle in understanding Greek, Shona or any other culture that is alien to me. Why? It is because as the learned doctor, you do not stop contradicting yourself. On the one hand you literally agree with the Mthwakazi Liberation Front (MLF) argument that there has not been any change to the fortunes of the people of Mthwakazi since the destruction of their state by British settler colonialists.

On the other hand you, as the learned doctor, you say that we should just accept our fate as a defeated people. By pointing out mistakes without which we ought to have realised the freedom of our people, we are basically convicting Dr Nkomo. You have said this is done on ‘hearsay evidence’, yet you are the same learned doctor who says Dr Nkomo was ‘outwitted and defeated’. I wonder therefore what you mean by ‘hearsay evidence’, when according to you, ‘we are still where we yesterday’.

6. Belief in the lies/propaganda of powers that be

Furthermore, my dear learned doctor you have posed the following questions: ‘Would the imperialists ever make a favourable report about their arch enemy in this part of the world?’ In answer to this question, with all due respect to you my learned doctor, you appear to have already forgotten that you continue to believe in the lies and propaganda of the same imperialists that King Lobengula ‘disappeared’ after crossing the ‘Tshangane River’.’ Were the Rhodesian forces and Zanla forces not operating in cahoots against the Zipra forces in 1980, you ask? And you continued; ‘Why do you think the British and the whole western world remained silent throughout the genocide in Mthwakazi?’

The answer to these questions is very simple my dear learned doctor. The adage that says charity begins at home remains true even when applied in response to your questions. It is a known fact (not hearsay) that Zanla never engaged in any serious and therefore significant battles against the Rhodesian forces throughout the war period. They did not destroy even a single bridge. Instead, Zanla forces were involved in forced political mobilisation (Pungwes) of the people of Mthwakazi throughout this period. It is in this way that they complemented the Rhodesian forces. I am surprised you did not read about this history, even from Nkomo’s own writings.

Therefore, it is not a collaboration that started in 1980, my learned doctor, but from inception; from the formation of Zanu and Zanla in the early 1960s. Zanu was always a project of the Rhodesian regime which was cemented after Smith’s Unilateral Declaration of Independence (UDI). But then Nkomo always knew about this fact and the modus operandi of your so-called imperialists. He himself has documented this. As to the question regarding the silent role played by the British and the entire western world when the people of Mthwakazi were subjected to hell, genocide and ethnic cleansing, we were simply being punished for following umkhuba wembuzi (the culture of goats), in this case the so-called ideology of socialism and communism.

Once again this brings us to what you call an attack against Dr Nkomo – the leadership question and its destination!! Where were the people of Mthwakazi being led to? Was it to a promised land? Was it to an archaic, anarchical and alien country called Zimbabwe? Was it to the Restoration of Mthwakazi? What was it my learned doctor? Why did we adopt the culture of goats when we have no knowledge whatsoever how they cry and mourn their dead each time one slaughters them for the food chain or the entertainment of one’s guests with meat (amawoso, etc)?  Kambe dokotela omkhulu, ungathatha imbuzi esibayeni uyihlabele abantu bemzini, uyakwazi yini ukuthi eziseleyo sikhala njani?

Of course not, ngoba owusiyo mbuzi wena, njalo awazi ukuthi imbuzi zithethela njani! Pho yini ndaba thina salandela umkhuba wembuzi zingazi ukuthi zithethelela njani?  Why could we not have stuck to who we are and fought for the Restoration of Mthwakazi, rather than what was not and had not been there before, an alien Zimbabwe? Why did we ditch our history in favour of an inapplicable ideology of socialism and communism? For all I care, we could have prosecuted the struggle for the liberation of Mthwakazi and not of a so-called Zimbabwe that had hitherto not existed. Moreover, we could have prosecuted the struggle for the liberation of Mthwakazi whilst embracing the sphere of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics’ (USSR’s) influence. 

There is virtually no reason to support any thesis that had we struggled for the liberation of Mthwakazi we would not have received the support from the USSR and other eastern European countries. Therefore, in answer to your question, my dear learned doctor, the reason why the western countries including Britain supported Mugabe or remained silent during the entire Gukurahundi period had everything to do with stopping what those countries perceived as the spread of the ideology of socialism and communism in Southern Africa.

This is why it took another 14 years for all the people of South Africa to taste freedom in 1994. Moreover, this why Zanu as a project of your so-called ‘imperialists’ could not provide support for the African National Congress (ANC) and its military wing, uMkhonto We Sizwe (MK) with physical bases within Zimbabwe from which to wage a guerrilla war against apartheid South Africa. Fundamentally, cementing all this was the reason why Robert Mugabe was given power on a platter in Maputo by Britain, in conjunction with South Africa represented by its Foreign Affairs Minister, Pik Botha and its Defence Minister, General Magnus Malan, on the eve of both Zimbabwe’s 1980 election and the assassination of Josiah Tongogara, Commander of Zanla.

My learned doctor, you only have to consult Nkomo’s own written material to understand what went on during that period. Again, if the learned doctor did not know about these facts, then he may as well succumb to Zanu-pf’s propaganda and spin doctoring. What is worth noting from this complex maze is that in the eyes of the western countries, Nkomo was not prevented from ascending to power because he was perceived to be a MTHWAKAZIAN but because he was perceived to be hell-bent on furthering and cementing the influence of socialism and communism in southern Africa.   

This after all was at the height of the cold war between the western and eastern countries. Both these blocks were fighting their proxy wars in Africa. Zapu and Zipra had to be stopped at all costs; the bigger objective being to delay or thwart completely the liberation of South Africa, led by the ANC  which was also perceived (this is not hearsay evidence) to be under the sphere of influence of the USSR and other countries in eastern Europe. You see, my learned doctor, it is you who is very naïve for failure to understand the bigger picture. Furthermore, you cannot therefore equate the contestation between the Rhodesian and Zanla forces on the one hand, and with Zipra on the other, as a contestation for the Restoration of Mthwakazi. Not, at all. That is being NAÏVE my learned doctor. Rather, it was a contestation for the liberation of a country called Zimbabwe. I am really surprised why even learned doctors cannot distinguish between Mthwakazi and Zimbabwe.

7. What are the significant differences between a Governor and a Prime Minister?

Surely for the learned doctor to ask: ‘If he had not wanted to walk away with Southern Rhodesia, why did he go to war?’  My own ancillary question is this:  What did he achieve having gone to the war? Why would any leader opt for war when what was desired could be gotten peacefully? In this case, why was it necessary to lose so much blood for virtually nothing? Could the learned doctor answer that? Why did Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo lead his people (ninety nine percent -99% of whom were people from Mthwakazi) into a futile war that only resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths of his followers for what, for a song called Zimbabwe or pamberi nechimurenga? From the point of view of a learned doctor, how do you justify this kind of leadership, which rejects walking away with something peacefully, but then loses everything in the process?

At any rate, my learned doctor, what is special about the differences that you cite about Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland run buy governors with Southern Rhodesia run by a prime minister. Why should we waste our time playing semantics (oma catshelana)? Is it not a fact that Northern Rhodesia achieved independence and became Zambia? What about Nyasaland? Did it not become Malawi at independence? What difference did it make that both these countries were run by governors instead of prime ministers when in the final analysis they achieved independence and statehood? Is it not a fact that, it was as a result of the independence of Zambia, that enabled Zapu and its military wing Zipra to get external bases from which not only to train its cadres but to prosecute the war?

Are you therefore saying, my learned doctor, that the reason Nkomo had to go to war against Southern Rhodesia instead of walking away with it just like Kaunda and Banda (with Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland) and naming it whatever he liked or even Zimbabwe for that matter, had to do with the fact that it was run by a prime minister? What was so special about being a prime minister?  Are you therefore saying that Nkomo only wanted to be a prime minister, and that was his bone of contention on comparative analysis between being a governor and a prime minister? This is really absurd, for any learned doctor to bring such an academic qualification as his into disrepute! If indeed I am reading you properly, this is the mother of all criticisms of Dr Nkomo at its very sinister and worst.

To even suggest that before Ian Smith came to power in that country (Rhodesia) there was no army is really taking the spectre of imagination very far. If hitherto there was no army, how was the rule by conquest over the people of Mthwakazi maintained and controlled since 1893? With this kind of thought processes, is there any wonder therefore that even as I conclude this response, I am still lost as to what the learned doctor wanted to put across, other than a bag of confused thoughts, assertions, accusations and allegations that are only substantiated by conjecture and dreamland. And as such, I really wonder whether this learned doctor has an identity, and if indeed, which one – Mthwakazian or Zimbabwean or somewhere in between or better still, an alien without any firm grounding over the issues that trouble the people of Mthwakazi.

8. Conclusion

I can only hope that as the learned doctor, you will undoubtedly recognize that the insights presented in the course of this open letter represent the road that I have travelled so far, and perhaps most importantly of all, the road that I still need to travel. As I continue to interrogate the Mthwakazi restoration agenda, I cannot but continue incessantly wandering back to the history of devastation of the people of Mthwakazi caused especially by the futile exercise of following an ideology that gave birth to monster Zimbabwe. If this monster bears any relevance to your humanity, well-being and future, then let us agree to disagree that it holds nothing for me.

Not least, what amazes me most are the little emotional arguments, devoid of any evidence whatsoever, that come in defence of Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo that are fundamentally held captive by an utopian nostalgia that bears no relevance to the present reality of the continued Rule by Conquest of the people of Mthwakazi. The reality, my good learned doctor is that we are probably worse off in survival terms today than we ever were in the entire history of European subjugation and conquest. Why? The reason may be that, even you as a good doctor, are not really sure what to call yourself; Zimbabwean or Mthwakazian!

If indeed you are also caught up in that quagmire, then ‘God forbid’ as you may not ever be able to discover exactly who you are, in your entire lifetime. I, on the other hand having travelled this thorny and devastating journey have finally discovered that I am indeed a bona fide citizen of Mthwakazi (not by dogma or hearsay, but in reality). It is in terms of the foregoing therefore that those people who originate in Mthwakazi, but who still can’t wash away their so-called Zimbabwean identity are hiding behind their fingers (perhaps like my good doctor, bacatshile nge minwe). Finally, I do hope that you will regard this submission not as an attack against anybody, not even against Dr Joshua Mqabuko ka Nyongolo Nkomo, but as a serious argument and contribution in defence and dedication to the Restoration of Mthwakazi.           

- Source: MLF, published by


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