Today is Heroes Day and Zimbabweans from all walks of life and across the political divide will take time to reflect on and celebrate the efforts of gallant sons and daughters of Zimbabwe who paid dearly for the country’s independence.
This year’s commemorations come after the harmonised elections which saw President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF receive a fresh mandate to form the next government.
However, the polls’ outcome is being fiercely disputed by the MDC led by Morgan Tsvangirai.
The 89-year-old Mugabe, who will now serve his seventh term of office, is expected to give a keynote address today, a week after the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) declared him winner.
Regional election observers, the African Union (AU) and Sadc have since declared the election as free and peaceful but are yet to endorse its credibility.
In a statement published in this issue, Tsvangirai says the biggest tragedy was that the independence which brave sons and daughters of Zimbabwe fought for did not come with the freedoms Zimbabweans aspire for.
“Up to this day, we remain a nation of a heroic people as we have tenaciously toiled over the last 33 years to complete the unfinished business of our liberation struggle; indeed to achieve the true meaning of our collective national aspiration for a better life for ourselves and our children.
“Indeed, so many sons and daughters of this country sacrificed their own lives so that we could be free again and one of the fundamental rights for which they toiled and died for was our right to vote.
“We have just come from a disputed and stolen election and the majority of Zimbabweans are still shocked at the brazen manner in which their vote was stolen.”
The MDC leader, who urged people not to despair, said he knew that Zimbabweans had voted for change.
“I see a brighter tomorrow for all of us. I see the triumph of the will of the people. I see today’s thieves caught up in the shame of their brazen theft of the people’s will,” Tsvangirai said.