In his statement on the 62nd session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in 2007, President Mugabe said, “I lost eleven precious years of my life in the jail of a white man whose freedom and well-being I have assured from the first day of Zimbabwe’s independence.” Imagine forgiving such people, let alone incorporating some of them in his democratic government.
Dr Joice Mujuru and her allies should have taken advantage of this exceptional gift of forgiveness inherent in President Mugabe. It was a matter of choice. Surely, the President could have forgiven them if they had shown contrition. It only needed humility and compunction from Mujuru and her group. Mujuru chose to remain in denial in the hope of salvaging her cabal’s political fortunes. It was a grave political slip up.
During the Meet the People Tour, the First Lady Dr Grace Mugabe advised the group, Dr Mujuru in particular, to ask for forgiveness from the President.
That was priceless and motherly advice that the Mujuru group should have heeded.
They should have gone to the President with their caps in hand. Precedents abound where President Mugabe let off some people whose sins were as red as blood, Rugare Gumbo for one.
It is not the first time that Dzikamai Mavhaire has been thrown into the political wildness. He was expelled in 1998 after he called on the President to step down. Forgiving as he is, President Mugabe allowed his re-admission in 2005. At least Mavhaire must have been the most cautious of the lot. Unfortunately, he did not learn from his previous mistakes.
Rugare Gumbo fell out with the external leadership during the war after he attempted a bloody coup.
According to historians, the God-fearing President spared Gumbo and his group from the gallows. Gumbo was fished out of the political mud in the 1990s and went on to occupy a very powerful portfolio in the Politburo, all this at the pleasure of the forgiving President.
It should have crossed his mind that he had a tainted history. A prudent person would never throw stones when he is in a glass house. Gumbo did just that.
Professor Jonathan Moyo is one of the politicians who can testify the forgiving character of President Mugabe. He was censured in 2005 after he stood as an independent candidate in Tsholotsho following a concerted mudslinging that linked him to an alleged palace coup. He was re-admitted into the party in 2009.
We have people like Edgar Tekere who, after being expelled went on to form a political party. Nevertheless, they died peacefully after having been forgiven by President Mugabe. Tekere and Enos Nkala even received the highest honour of being interred at the national shrine.
Written by Tarafa Shumba