We are not part of Matebeleland Collective:uMhlahlo Wesizwe

We are not part of  Matebeleland Collective:uMhlahlo Wesizwe
Published: 09 May 2019 | by Mkhululi Sibindi, Information and Publicity Dept

08 May 2019


Re: UMhlahlo we Sizwe sikaMthwakazi press release- The Matabeleland Collective Initiative

UMhlahlo we Sizwe sikaMthwakazi would like to categorically state that as an organisation we are not part of the so-called Matabeleland Collective which was recently assembled and convened by the Zimbabwe Regime of Emmerson Mnangagwa and its agents as a strategy to circumvent and sidestep critical matters pertaining to the Matabeleland Question.


Reference is made to a list of organisations dubbed the 'Matabeleland Collective' in which the name of our organisation appears amongst a host of other organisations alleged to have endorsed a compendium that supports the exhumation and reburial of victims of the 1980s Matabele Genocide perpetrated against innocent Matabele people by the Zanu PF Government under Robert Mugabe's leadership with Emmerson Mnangagwa as the Chief architect.


This correspondence serves to inform the people of Mthwakazi that the claims that UMhlahlo we Sizwe sikaMthwakazi is a member of this Matabeleland Collective are not only false but mischievous. We wish to inform the people of Mthwakazi that we did not send any of our members to represent us when the so-called Matabeleland Collective met with both the British Ambassador and the Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa.


Effectively, this means if anyone or any group of people, claims to have been our representative in that meeting, then that individual or group of individuals is guilty of gross misrepresentation. In our records as an organisation we have never met Emmerson Mnangagwa or his emissaries.


We admit only to meeting the British Ambassador, Andrew Pocock, in 2008, who was in the company of 14 ambassadors of the European Union. In that meeting our executive refused several proposals by the British Government with regards to the three Matabele issues namely:


1. Mthwakazi Sovereignty
2. Reparations on lost wealth
3. Compensation for the two episodes of genocide (1893-1979 and 1980-Present Day).


The first proposal by the British was that we should, as Mthwakazi, support Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC in his contest with Robert Mugabe for the leadership of Zimbabwe. In return for this support the British would arrange a Mthwakazi autonomous state like Scotland. This proposal was shot down in consideration of the fact that our agenda could not be allowed to hang on the precarious balance of an unknown eventuality. As fate would have it, Morgan Tsvangirai failed to defeat Robert Mugabe in a series of elections since then.


The second proposal was that, our reparations would be calculated in terms of the 1893 value based on the present financial standards that were going to be discussed and the funds were going to be used for the development of Mthwakazi. This proposal was also rejected, for the simple reason that if funds were processed and disbursed to Matabeleland whilst still under the occupation of Zimbabwe then that money will be subject to Zimbabwe's monetary systems and would have an unintended economic spill over into Zimbabwe without much material benefit to those it purposed to serve given the Zimbabwe's advanced culture of corruption.


The third proposal was that the envisaged new government under Morgan Tsvangirai would allow victims of the Matabele Genocide to be reburied and their families compensated using a model similar to that which is being presented today. This proposal was also rejected on the basis that there could not be any compensation without truth telling, acknowledgement of culpability and justice. This was our position then; it is still our position today.


Since then UMhlahlo has never met any British diplomat in respect of all the three issues above. The claim that the current Matabeleland Collective initiative is a successive effort of our previous engagements with the British ambassadors is therefore not only fictitious but calculated to mislead the public.


For the record, we still maintain that Mthwakazi and Zimbabwe are two separate countries which were colonised on two different dates (1890 and 1893 respectively) and later combined to form the Crown Colony of Rhodesia in 1923. We further maintain that Mthwakazi was handed over to Zimbabwe through a tribal arrangement that allocated 60 seats to Mashonaland, 20 seats to Matabeleland and 20 seats to the White community in clear violation of the United Nations Decolonisation Procedures (Article 1514 of 1960).


Even to this day, this constitutional arrangement is a serious setback to the Matabeleland territory as it grapples with domestic colonization which has opened it up for further penetration by foreign elements which continue to manipulate disorient our people politically now standing as our political representative in various fora and institutions.


We further maintain that since the Matabele Genocide is a crime against humanity, the perpetrators of this heinous crime deserve to face justice and we shall not rest until that eventuality is achieved.


Mkhululi Sibindi

Information and Publicity Department
UMhlahlo we Sizwe sika Mthwakazi


- Source: uMhlahlo Wesizwe, published by umthwakazireview.com

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