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Muzorewa urges genuine Gukurahundi resolution

OPPOSITION United African National Congress (UANC) leader Gwinyai Muzorewa (pictured) says spirit mediums must be engaged as part of efforts to address the Gukurahundi massacres.

OPPOSITION United African National Congress (UANC) leader Gwinyai Muzorewa  says spirit mediums must be engaged as part of efforts to address the Gukurahundi massacres.

Muzorewa said deep-rooted spiritual pain from the 1980’s mass killings cannot be overlooked as the victims needed spiritual healing.

Chiefs have been tasked to lead the public hearings into the massacres, which are expected to start next month in Matabeleleland.

The traditional leaders have since received conflict management training and laptops as well as other recording gadgets in preparation for the public hearings.

In an interview with Sunday Southern Eye, Muzorewa spoke of the role of spiritual healers within the districts where the hearings would be conducted.

"While national reconciliation is important, what is crucial now is genuine spiritual healing,” he said.

These healers would guide the process, prescribing specific rituals necessary for healing, Muzorewa said.

“For instance, they might instruct us to slaughter 10 black cows and hold a remembrance party,” he said.

“Such rituals are integral to the healing process.”

“We must move away from the mindset that spiritual healing is inferior to Western medicine.

“Just because a practice is African does not mean it is bad.”

President Emmerson Mnangagwa has also called upon religious bodies to contribute to national peace towards addressing Gukurahundi.

However, Muzorewa pointed out that true healing requires more than issuing birth certificates to Gukurahundi survivors.

“This gesture cannot replace the loss of 'mother, uncle, gogo, son, father, or child,” he said.

“Zimbabwe cannot continue to live in a 'moment of madness, as former president Robert Mugabe described it,” he asserted.

Muzorewa proposed the formation of a special ministry focusing on spiritual healing, aimed at treating not only historical traumas but also contemporary issues such as drug abuse and suicide.

At least 20 000 people were killed in Midlands and Matabeleland when Mugabe deployed the North Korean trained Fifth Brigade to crack against alleged dissent to his rule.

The majority of victims were members and supporters of his opponents in the opposition Zapu.

Mugabe claimed to have discovered arms caches at Zapu farms precipitating the deployment of the Fifth Brigade against suspected dissidents.

He never apologised for the killings or allowed public debate on the emotive matter until he died.

Mnangagwa promised to address Gukurahundi after meeting chiefs and other stakeholders at the Bulawayo State house.

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