Former Cabinet minister Dumiso Dabengwa has claimed that the late Father Zimbabwe, Joshua Nkomo, was responsible for President Robert Mugabe’s political career. According to Dabengwa, without Nkomo’s mentorship, Mugabe would have remained a teacher and a nonentity in politics. Speaking during Nkomo’s Centenary Memorial Lecture at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg South Africa on Saturday, Dabengwa said
Nkomo recruited Robert Mugabe into nationalist politics. Nkomo catapulted Mugabe into national prominence during the NDP (National Democratic Party) and later Zapu. Mugabe had been working as a teacher in Ghana when Nkomo paid visits to that country for events such as the All-Africa People’s Congress in 1958.
When Nkomo was exploring the acceptability of Mugabe into the NDP, he sent and instructed Ackim Ndlovu and me (Dabengwa) to meet Mugabe at the Bulawayo Airport and take him to Nkomo’s home in Pelandaba. Mugabe was later introduced to the party members at a rally in Bulawayo, and he became the NDP’s secretary for information and publicity.