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Long live unity 

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ON December 22 2022 Zimbabweans commemorate Unity Day. 

This is a very important day on Zimbabwe’s calendar – a day that brought together the two most important formations in the country, PF ZAPU and ZANU PF after the signing of the Unity Accord. 

That was in 1987.  

As we celebrate Unity Day it is prudent to revisit President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s inauguration speech on November 24 2017 because he was strengthening the foundation established by the December 22 1987 Unity Accord.

No doubt the Unity Accord was a decisive factor in mapping the way for the country’s path to unity, peace and development that the nation enjoys today.

The basis of the Unity Accord was: “To unite our nation; establish peace, law and order and to guarantee social and economic development and political stability.”

The nation came together convinced that national unity, political stability, peace, law and order, social and economic development could be achieved.

Since then, Zimbabweans have not allowed any force internal or foreign to divide them.

The principles of unity and peace still remain important and Government has always worked towards the benefit of all Zimbabweans.

The country’s historic programmes, the Land Reform and Resettlement and the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment, have been executed to the benefit of all regardless of tribe, colour and creed and the manifestation of the enduring footprints of the Unity Accord are seen through the peace and unity that Zimbabwe is renowned for.

This unity and peace has put the country in a unique position to develop without the hindrances of civil wars and mayhem characterising some nations globally.

Divide and rule tactics that our erstwhile colonisers have tried to use to destabilise the country and regain its control have found this peace and unity too strong a barrier to break.

And this was the message that found prominence in President Mnangagwa’s speech at the National Sports Stadium on November 24.

Having inherited a country whose politics had been illuminated by hate speech and antagonism, President Mnangagwa emphasised that he is everyone’s President regardless of colour, tribe or race.

These attributes, President Mnangagwa noted, would create the platform for the much-needed economic development after years of poor performance by various sectors of the economy.

As Zimbabwe celebrates yet another milestone on December 22, it is imperative to reflect on President Mnangagwa’s respect for the priceless gift — unity that some prophets of doom have started speculating on.

In his inauguration speech, President Mnangagwa was all about reconciliation, rather than retribution.

“I admit that I hold no particularly unique qualifications that sets apart from the deep pool of able citizens of our Party and land, who otherwise could have been chosen to occupy this onerous office,” he said. 

“But even as I make constant reference to my Party, ZANU PF, I am not oblivious of the many Zimbabweans from across the political, ethnic and racial divide who have helped make this day and who thus have legitimate expectations from the office I now occupy. 

“The decision of my Party is merely for purposes of political identification, as I intend, nay am required to serve our country as the President of all citizens regardless of colour, creed, religion, tribe, totem or political affiliation.” 

As the country continues on its journey to prosperity, there is no doubt that the country’s leadership will continue to uphold and foster the tenets of peace and unity.

Peace and unity remain an integral part of the country’s development agenda.

Long live unity, long live Zimbabwe!

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