Former Minister of War Veterans, Tshinga Dube has said political elites must put their differences aside and unite for a common cause – solving the political and socio-economic crises in the country.
Dube made the remarks while speaking to DailyNews reporter Jeffrey Muvundusi in an interview on Tuesday.
His remarks come when the economic and humanitarian crisis in the country has worsened since the imposition of the lockdown to stop the spread of coronavirus.
There have also been increased reports of human rights violations against members of the opposition MDC lately. Below are excerpts from the interview.
“I am one of those who have been calling for the Government of National Unity, not because there is a vacancy for them but I feel it will make us focus on running the economy only, instead of spending so much time fighting and squabbling over politics.
“All these things we are hearing about abductions and torture are caused by divisions and they affect the reputation of our country.
“So if they (politicians) can come together all this will be over and we don’t lose anything as a nation.
“But there are some people in government who feel that maybe if this GNU comes into effect, they will lose their positions,” said Dube.
Meanwhile, Dube has condemned the abduction and torture of three opposition activists saying the acts unnecessarily gave the country a bad name in the eyes of the outside world.
MDC Alliance MP Joanna Mamombe, activists Cecilia Chimbiri and Netsai Marova were seized by alleged state security agents to be subjected to horrendous abuses early this month.
The three were being accused of attempting to topple the Zanu PF led government after they had joined other party activists to stage a flash anti-government protest in Harare’s Warren Park suburb moments before.
They later recounted tales of both physical and se_xual abuse encountered at the hands of their captors including se_xual harassment.
The incident came on the heels of another widely condemned savage police attack on two Bulawayo sisters for violating the lockdown regulations.
Dube, who has just published a book in which he pours out on how the country has been misgoverned in the past, said it was unheard of for a society to brutalise its mothers and sisters.
“We can’t do that to our women. They are our mothers,” said the ex-military Colonel in an exclusive interview with NewZimbabwe.
“All these things don’t work well before the international community.”
While government has pleaded for time to allow the police to carry out investigations to establish what happened to the MDC officials, Dube said the damage has already been done.
“Giving time for the police to investigate does not change the perception of the people who have already got the news,” said Dube, who once told late ex-President Robert Mugabe it was time to leave his job.
“For instance, I was going through the internet. I also saw some two women who were thoroughly beaten by policemen for nothing.
“They (police) gave the excuse that they had broken the lockdown rules. But it’s not right. You can put them in prison if they are not able to pay fines.
“What we must actually know is that an image of a country is built on various things that happen in that country.
“They won’t show a beautiful side of Harare in other countries. They will just show those people lying in hospital after being beaten up.”
The ex-Zanu PF legislator for Makokoba implored government not to view the opposition as an enemy but embrace divergent views for purposes of development.
“We should not look at an opposition as an enemy,” he said.
“I can give an example of a country like Botswana. They have had an opposition for more than 60 years. So, let them be. After all different opinions are always constructive.
“We never thought we will beat each other and these things that are happening now are just very unfortunate.”