History of Zimbabwe Part III

In addition to a settlement in the millions – of US $ 5 million in the media – Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace should regularly receive generous cash donations – according to media reports, at least US $ 150,000 a month. At the time of their abdication, the couple also owned numerous lucrative farms, the legal access to which is sometimes doubted, and valuable real estate – luxury villas at home and abroad. The entire property was loud media years ago to one billion US dollars estimated, a lot of money is said to be abroad. Numerous critics repeatedly accused Mugabe of excessive possession through the plundering of the already impoverished land and the suffering population who depend on international humanitarian aid. Regardless of this, the birthday of ex-President Robert Mugabe, February 21, will henceforth be celebrated as a national holiday and declared “Robert Mugabe National Youth Day”. Robert Mugabe died on September 6, 2019. After a dispute between his family and the ruling party over the place of burial, he was buried in his area of origin.

Origin and development of today’s state

According to commit4fitness, the current state emerged from a negotiated solution between representatives of the former settler colony and the independence movement. These three-month negotiations led to the signing of the Lancester House Agreement, to elections on December 21, 1979 and to the political independence of Zimbabwe on April 18, 1980. This new state not only inherited the parliamentary traditions of Great Britain and the authoritarian rule structures of the racist white settler government as well as the unequal distribution of land and other economic inequalities, but also the colonial culture of violence. The secret service and the military were not fundamentally reformed, but rather used tactically by the new rulers and supplemented by new military structures. Violent guerrilla units have not been fully demobilized.

From 1982 massacres took place in Matabeleland and neighboring areas in the southwest of the country. They were officially called Gukurahundi, which means in the Shona language: “the early rain that washes away the chaff”. Responsible was the 5th Brigade, a special unit trained by North Koreans, which was subordinate to the then Prime Minister Robert Mugabe. The reason for their excesses of violence were weapons finds and allegations of conspiracy against ZAPU members. An estimated 20,000 people had been killed by 1986/87. Countless people were tortured, raped and brutally ill-treated by state security forces. To the systematically selected victims included teachers and village authorities. International food aid has been used as a “weapon” by the ruling party in the drought-plagued southwestern parts of the country and withheld from the starving local population. There was no criminal investigation or official forms of transitional justice, but a general amnesty for the perpetrators. Approaches to documenting the massacres came from the Catholic Church. Current leaders, some in the government and especially in the military, were (partly) responsible for the massacres in high-ranking posts and ordered violence, whereby inhuman language such as “extermination” was apparently part of the mobilization of violence.

To this day, there are different assessments of the role of former Rhodesian secret service employees and double agents in the brutal procedure. They had contacts with the security apparatus in apartheid South Africa or worked for it. He feared that the independent neighboring countries would support the underground fighters of the African National Congress (ANC). To what extent the international community, specifically Great Britain, the former British colonial power, knew about the excesses of violence, new archive research and the media address the issue. Bodies set up by the government in the meantime, including on reconciliation, remain controversial for many reasons. In mid-2017 there was a controversy about the memory of the massacres, specifically the politically motivated procedure to erect a controversial memorial stone without consulting the families of the murdered. Critics accused the ruling party of appropriating the murdered and their relatives in the run-up to the 2018 elections. The controversy continued after the 2019 elections and continued into early 2020. Filmmakers, artists and civil society actors were threatened repeatedly. In early November 2020, it was announced that President Emmerson Mnangagwa was giving exhumations and burials to the chiefs transferred – past civil society Gukurahundi victim and survivor organizations and the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission.

History of Zimbabwe

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