ZAPU, which is desperate to recover its war records allegedly confiscated by Zanu-PF during Gukurahundi says they will continue to engage since they cannot invade the ruling party’s headquarters where the documents are believed to be kept.
The mother party says it has always known that its war records and other documentation were still available, kept by Zanu-PF to suppress ZAPU’s role in the liberation struggle.
ZAPU’s documents were seized in 1982 after arms were allegedly discovered by the army at Ascot farm.
This signalled the start of Gukurahundi while ZAPU party leaders were arrested and properties belonging both to the party and ZPRA were taken.
These claims are coming against the backdrop of former cabinet minister and Zanu-PF politburo member, now in exile, Professor Jonathan Moyo, who recently tweeted that he could confirm ZAPU archives stolen during Gukurahundi were kept at the ruling party’s headquarters in Harare.
Prof Moyo said he could state that under oath as he was a Zanu-PF politburo member from 2000 to 2005 and 2010 to 2017.
The politburo is the ruling party’s highest decision making body.
In an interview with CITE, ZAPU Southern Region Communications Director, Patrick Ndlovu, confirmed the party suspected and even knew that their archives were still in existence.
He noted even the party’s late leader, Dr Dumiso Dabengwa, ascertained that Zanu-PF still possessed their documents.
“If you remember at Dabengwa’s funeral service at White City Stadium in Bulawayo, last year, (current president) Isaac Mabuka said Dabengwa assured him that the archives were still in the hands of Zanu-PF. We have known all that along. They are keeping those stolen records to safeguard their false narrative of the war,” he highlighted.
Ndlovu said the stolen archives contained information relating to ZPRA, its personnel, deployments, assets, title deeds and other ZAPU data.
“We want those records back. They not only belong to ZAPU but also to the nation. They contain vital information on the history of this country,” he pointed out.
“If (Prof) Jonathan Moyo tells you, our records are at the Zanu-PF headquarters, he may be right. When we went to the government office to inquire about our title deeds, the officials told us the papers were missing meaning the government does not have them as they were confiscated by Zanu-PF and kept at their party building.”
“The only way to retrieve these is to engage with the President directly and maybe he will be willing to return these. Otherwise short of invading the Zanu-PF headquarters, there is nothing we can do but engage. We hope his conscience will allow him to return what belong to us,” quipped the communications director.Communications Director, Patrick Ndlovu.
He also alluded to the meeting between ZPRA and President Mnangagwa where the former freedom fighters were seeking the return of their properties.
“These are the engagement efforts that are in place hoping that the president can keep his word,” Ndlovu said.