Linda Masarira’s full response to Zimeye article claiming she said Ndebeles are cowards

There has been a report on Zim eye claiming that I labelled the Ndebele people cowards and cry babies. I wish to categorically state it clearly that this is a hoax and a misconstruction of facts, sensationalized to paint a bad image of my person and the values I subscribe to.

As a response to the media report I want to state facts clearly and this should be taken as a true record of what I said and I will reiterate my sentiments. Reverend Angliston Sibanda in his presentation on the situation in Matabeleland indicated that the region was suffering from various challenges that include marginalization of the region characterized by lack of development, closure of industries, massive retrenchment in the region, lack of water and devolution of power. As a participant I responded to the presentation as a former NRZ employee I responded that the people from Matabeleland (not necessarily the Ndebele speaking people).

I am on record saying most Ndebele speaking people where reluctant to participate in efforts to confront the system in fighting for their rights. I have on numerous occasions mobilized people at NRZ to continue fighting against the injustices at the institution which is head quartered in Bulawayo but they were not eager to confront the situation hence my concerns about the people of Matabeleland .

My point put simply is that whether Ndebele, Shona, Kalanga or otherwise. Zimbabweans must be able to confront bad governance and stop laying the victims card, it is however regrettable if anyone might have been offended by the perceived utterances. I would want to make it clear that I have and am still working hard to ensure that we have a democratic Zimbabwe and we should be weary of detractors bent on dividing us.

I would want to make it clear that I am no tribalist as even Ndebele blood runs my veins, as my maternal grandmother is Ndebele. I envisage a state where everyone is important and has a role to play in the liberation of this country.

I am a firm believer of reconciliation and Zimbabwe needs us to work together as Zimbabweans without dividing ourselves on ethnic, tribal, racial and religious lines. We should not allow the very system that we are fighting to destruct us away from the very fundamental values that we stand for. I urge the people of Matabeleland to continue fighting against injustice and demand reparations on the horrid atrocities committed by the Robert Mugabe regime in the 80s through the Gukurahundi massacres.

I reemphasize that no amount of mudslinging will weaken my resolve to fight for a better Zimbabwe, a Zimbabwe where everyone is treated as equal, devoid of tribalism or hate sentiments.

We are all Zimbabweans and must be United in our cause to rid this nation of dictatorship and tyranny.

In conclusion there is an old English saying which says, “a lie travels half away around the world whilst the truth is still putting on its running shoes”.

Linda T. Masarira

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