Community Development Politics Social

Unity Accord remains a catalyst for sustainable, inclusive development

The Unity Accord was signed between the late President Robert Mugabe and the late Vice President Joshua Nkomo (pictured)

As we commemorate this National Unity Day, it is also critically important that we safeguard and advance our national interests.

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The historic Unity Accord is a timeless heritage to accelerate the attainment of the shared national vision for inclusive development and a modernised, industrialised, prosperous, and empowered society, President Emmerson Mnangagwa has said.

These were the President’s sentiments to commemorate the National Unity today.

He challenged citizens to use this important National Unity Day to re-commit to safeguarding, preserving, and promoting rich heritage, for the benefit of both present and future generations.

“As we commemorate this National Unity Day, it is also critically important that we safeguard and advance our national interests. Equally, every Zimbabwean, at home and those in the Diaspora, must remain encouraged by the fact that we are not stuck in the past nor consumed by the wounds of yester-year disturbances.

“Our nation is moving forward with hope and determination, crafting a brighter and more prosperous future for all Zimbabweans, leaving no one and no community or place behind. The national healing process led by the Traditional Leadership has now been fully resourced as indicated in our 2024 National Budget. Community-based programmes are set to commence next year, with a broad array of interventions that will involve the affected individuals and families,” President Mnangagwa said.

Zimbabwe is a unitary state, with many cultures, languages, and tribes, united under one national flag and national anthem. The country is endowed with great wealth and resources. To fully exploit the abundant resources, there is a need to close ranks and focus on nation-building.

President Mnangagwa warned that the divide-and-rule tactics perpetrated during colonialism and being attempted by opportunistic neo-liberals must never be given a foothold in the country.

“United we stand, divided we fall. As such, let us all reject regionalism, tribalism, self-hate, and all forms of violence. We have a duty and responsibility to work harder with honesty and integrity to utilise the vast opportunities that are before us. Increased production and productivity across all sectors of the economy remain our collective priority.

“Our developmental philosophy, Nyika inovakwa, inotongwa, inonamatigwa nevene vayo, Ilizwe lakhiwa, libuswe, likhulekelwe ngabanikazi balo must now be distilled right down to the family and community levels; Musha ne dunhu zvinovakwa nevene vazvo. Similarly, our national character of a united people must be exhibited by Zimbabweans in the diaspora. No matter where you are in the world, you must be united; you are one people, with one country and one motherland, Zimbabwe.”

December 22 is the day Zimbabweans celebrate unity. It is a day to foster unity and encourage tolerance in our diversity.
“We join our fellow Zimbabweans as we celebrate together the unity and peace that has prevailed in this country over the years and encourage every one of us to preach the good news of unity, peace, and love. One hand washes the other. Our ancestors said, “Chara chimwe hachitswanye inda.” In that same spirit, we encourage all Zimbabweans to delete and dump all vices that disable unity of purpose. A house divided against itself will not stand. We can only build this great nation together united in our diversity.
“We might have different political views, but that doesn’t mean that we have to hate each other. Zimbabwe is our country. We need equal opportunities and a chance to create wealth. With shared equal responsibility, we can make Zimbabwe a better place for all Zimbabweans regardless of class in society. We need to unite in our diversity and speak with one voice as we strive to unite this beautiful country and its people,” said Linda Masarira, the President of the LEAD party.
She paid tribute to the founding fathers of Unity Accord, the late Joshua Nkomo and the late former President of Zimbabwe, Robert Gabriel Mugabe, for setting aside their egos and agreeing to put Zimbabwe, national interests, and Zimbabweans first.
“When two elephants fight, the grass suffers. On the 22nd of December 1987, after about 6 years of civil unrest, Mugabe and Nkomo signed what we know today as the Unity Accord. Unity Day is historic in post-independent Zimbabwe for the peace it brought and hope for a brighter and united Zimbabwe.
“Every year, we celebrate this unity of once warring political parties and encourage all existing parties of today to emulate the same spirit of Ubuntu that prevailed then to save Zimbabwe from doom. We pray for peace and unity to prevail in our political economy today,” Masarira said.
She added that the biggest lesson drawn from the unity accord resolution is that at all times, citizens should all put the interests of Zimbabwe first ahead of their interests or egos.
“At the end of the day, we are all one people, and we should work towards rebuilding Zimbabwe and get rid of the political toxicity that has stalled meaningful sustainable economic and human development. There is a real need for a paradigm shift of mindsets.
“Let us UNITE in earnest, forgive each other sincerely, reconcile, and embrace each other as Zimbabweans. It takes two to Tango. Let us work together to build a prosperous Zimbabwe for the sovereignty of this great nation.”

About the author

Byron Adonis Mutingwende