Gukurahundi hearings manual translated to local languages The Gukurahundi manual

Nqobile Tshili, [email protected]

THE Gukurahundi manual which traditional leaders are set to use when conducting public hearings has been translated into local languages while operational vehicles have been availed ahead of the next month’s launch of the Gukurahundi hearings. 

In October 2022, President Mnangagwa launched the Gukurahundi manual at the State House in Bulawayo.

Traditional leaders crafted and adopted the victim-centred , which is expected to guide how the public hearings will be conducted. 

The manual, which is a product of inclusive engagements between chiefs and various stakeholders, is a culmination of traditional leaders’ meetings with President Mnangagwa, which started in March 2019.

President Mnangagwa is next month expected to launch the Gukurahundi hearings programme which is part of initiatives to address the post-independence conflict. 

The late former President Cde Robert Mugabe and late Vice-President Joshua Nkomo signed the Unity Accord on December 22, 1987 which ended the disturbances. 

While the Unity Accord produced a political solution to the conflict, the underlying social problems remained and that is what the Second Republic is now working to address.

The ongoing process is expected to lead to reburials of some of the victims while the Government has already intervened to ensure affected citizens have access to national documents.

A total of 70 chiefs from Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South will lead the first phase of the Gukurahundi public hearings before the programme is rolled out in the Midland province.

Since 2018, President Mnangagwa has been constantly engaging traditional leaders on the way forward in terms of addressing the Gukurahundi issue.

Chiefs and supporting staff have undergone training on how to conduct the public hearings and Government has availed the required resources including recording equipment, computers and tablets.

In an interview yesterday, National Council of Chiefs president Chief Mtshane Khumalo confirmed that the Gukurahundi manual has been translated and said preparations for the launch are now at an advanced stage. 

“We have been told to start preparations for the launch. We have been informed that anytime in July the President is going to launch the Gukurahundi Community Hearings programme. I hope by the end of next week we will have information on the dates of the launch,” he said.

Chief Mtshane Khumalo said the manual has been translated into Kalanga, IsiNdebele and Tonga among other languages spoken in Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South.

He said Government has also provided vehicles for public hearings support staff.

“Vehicles have been sourced for the public hearings. Each chief will have a vehicle which will be used by his or her panel. However, we feel that a single vehicle will not be adequate.

Zimbabwe Christian Alliance executive director and reconciliation advocate Reverend Useni Sibanda commended the translation of the Gukurahundi Manual to local languages.

He said since the Gukurahundi hearings will be community-centred, the communities should be free to make their submissions in local languages.

“This will enable the people to express themselves in their own language,” said Rev Sibanda. – @nqotshili



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