"Today we are holding our commemorations against the background of renewed glaring and unjustified attacks by our perennial detractors, both inside and outside our borders. "Let us, however, not lose heart or be discouraged, but look back to our rich history and draw lessons from our departed, who since the 189os united and showed resilience in their gallant fight against oppressive forces," Mnangagwa said.
He called for unity and peace in the country, adding that the attacks on the government would not succeed.
"Our position is clear. A firm foundation has been laid and continues to be strengthened for a thriving constitutional democracy, and a just, open, accountable and prosperous society. "With unfaltering determination, and emboldened by the experiences of the unrelenting attacks on our country in the past two decades, we know that the future is bright. Our success is inevitable. "The divisive falsehoods and concoctions by renegades and supremacists who want to pounce on our natural resources will never win the day. Truth shall triumph over lies and good over evil," Mnangagwa said further.
The United Nations and The Elders are among those who have called on the government to end the alleged human rights violations in the country, and engage in inclusive national dialogue to end Zimbabwe's myriad crises.
"The Secretary-General has been following with concern recent developments in Zimbabwe. He urges the Government of Zimbabwe to ensure the protection of all fundamental human rights, notably the freedom of opinion and expression and the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association, in accordance with Zimbabwe's human rights obligations. "He also calls on all political actors and civil society to resolve issues peacefully through inclusive dialogue," the deputy spokesperson for the UN secretary general, Farhan Hag, said recently.
However, Mnangagwa said yesterday that the government was committed to the rule of law, democracy and fighting corruption in the country. "The second republic has, since its inception, accelerated the entrenchment and consolidation of democracy, constitutionalism and the rule of law in pursuit of social justice and equal opportunities for the economic empowerment of the previously marginalised majority. "Informed by a cardinal ethos during the liberation struggle, the second republic's thrust in the fight against corruption is unwavering.
"My administration, therefore, makes no apologies for fixing our systems across the socio, economic and political spectrum. "Accountability and transparency will keep on being enforced in every facet of our society. The door to the old manner of doing things is closed. The corrupt way is shut and those who choose that route will face dire consequences," Mnangagwa said.
"The location of this (Mbuya Nehanda) statue carries added historical meaning because the intersection of Samora Machel Avenue and Julius Nyerere Way is the spot where Mbuya Nehanda used to rest and drink water from a river that flowed at the site," Mnangagwa said.
He also said other heroes and heroines from the early wars of resistance, including Mtshane Khumalo who commanded the Imbizo Regiment under King Lobengula - that defeated the Allan Wilson Patrol at the Battle of Pupu on 10 December 1893 - would be honoured in a similar manner.
"Other distinguished heroes and heroines of the First Chimurenga/Umvukhela such as Sekuru Kaguvi, Chaminuka, Mkwati, Queen Lozikeyi Khumalo, Chinengundu, Mashayamombe, Mgandani Dlodlo, Chiwashira, Muchecheterwa, Chingaira Makoni and Mapondera, among others, will be accorded appropriate recognition," he said.
"From the Second Chimurenga/Umvukela, the late General Josiah Magama Tongogara and General Alfred Nikita Mangena, Cde Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Cde Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo and Cde Simon Vengesai Muzenda, among others, will also be honoured," he also said.
Mnangagwa said the country was poised for economic growth, adding that Zimbabwe was on course to achieve a US$12 billion mining industry, and to become a net exporter of electricity by 2023.
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