The Sunday News
Mkhululi Ncube, Sunday News Reporter
TRADITIONAL leaders from Matabeleland provinces have received equipment to be used during the Gukurahundi hearings which are expected to commerce early next year.
The equipment which comprises a laptop, recorders and printers were given to the chiefs and their rapporteurs who have been undergoing a four-day training programme at a local hotel in Bulawayo to get them ready to begin the hearings. They were received from the office of the President and Cabinet.
Chiefs Council of Zimbabwe President Chief Mtshane Khumalo said the equipment was part of the commitment by the Second Republic to close the Gukurahundi chapter. He said 72 chiefs, their panel members and rapporteurs received the training and equipment.
“These gadgets will assist chiefs as they conduct the hearings on the emotive Gukurahundi issue. There is no way we would have begun the programme without them because we need to record all the proceedings from the public outreach when we conduct the hearings. The information must be preserved for posterity hence the need for these gadgets. These gadgets were received from the Office of the President and Cabinet. We are grateful that the Office of the President and Cabinet has been able to purchase them for the smooth progression of our programme. We hope to finish our training before the end of the year and if there are things that are left we shall finish them early next year so that we start the process,” said Chief Mtshane.
He said the training was the second to be done in preparation for the commencement of the hearings expected early next year. He said the hearings will begin in Matabeleland and then move to Midlands.
“Our wish is to start the hearings early next year but we will hold the last training after which we will report back to the National Chiefs’ Council because this programme is under them. After that we will write a report to President Mnangagwa and once all has been cleared we will invite him to officially launch the start of the programme,” he said.
When the Second Republic came into power, President Mnangagwa declared that the Gukurahundi episode was an open subject which members of the public must be free to discuss. He said it was important for the nation to confront its dark past and find a permanent solution that would foster national unity and the healing of victims. He spearheaded the process and brought chiefs into the fold to start the process of finding closure to the historical episode. — @themkhust