via Female vets demand sex compensation – New Zimbabwe 07/02/2015
ZANU PF bigwigs and ex-Zanla commanders who fought in the war of liberation, have been fingered in the case of rampant sexual abuse of female combatants who now demand compensation for their suffering.
Ex-women freedom fighters said comments attributed to Zanu PF Politburo member and war veteran Oppah Muchinguri, accusing former Vice-President Joice Mujuru of forcing young women to sleep with male combatants during the liberation struggle, have all but confirmed the shenanigans by “chefs”.
The women said the admission gives them a fresh opportunity to demand compensation for their suffering.
The war veterans said all along their claims for compensation for the abuse they suffered during the liberation struggle were suppressed by their colleagues in “higher offices,” who were now accusing each other of perpetrating the crime.
Muchinguri was quoted by The Sunday Mail a few weeks ago as saying: “When Joice came back from Zambia, in fact she did not undergo any form of training.
“A few days after she joined us in Mozambique, Joice physically assaulted me. I, Cde Duri and Cde Chitsotso, resisted sleeping with the likes of Cde [Didymus] Mutasa, Cde Bhombandiani and I was whipped for that. Imagine, Joice was there!
“We want you to understand how young female soldiers suffered as Joice engineered all these abuses.”
But Muchinguri denied Saturday ever making such allegations.
“I never said that. What I said was recorded and it is not correct that I said she [Mujuru] did that,” she told The Standard.
Mujuru, who could not be reached for comment yesterday, married her husband, the late former army commander General Solomon Mujuru in Mozambique. A number of other Zanla commanders and Zanu PF officials, among them Mutasa, also married women combatants.
Outspoken former female freedom fighter and Zimbabwe Union of Democrats (ZUD) president Margaret Dongo said what Muchinguri said was a tip of the iceberg as a lot was still to be revealed.
“The truth of the matter has not yet been told….abuses of female ex-freedom fighters were so high and sophisticated that they deserve to be paid damages,” said Dongo.
Another ex-combatant and prolific writer, Freedom Nyamubaya said the abuse of female combatants was a very sensitive matter.
“The issue of abused former female combatants by chefs is a hot potato. I talked about it in most of my books and poems,” said Nyamubaya.
Among Nyamubaya works, the poem, For Suzana is irresistible for its gentle narration of ordeals of a woman who sacrifices her life to train and carry arms for freedom before suffering humiliation through rape when her body becomes a “church for high-ranking monks to relieve their stress”.
Another female ex-combatant who only wanted to be identified as Chapwititi (her Chimurenga name), said it was sad to note that Muchinguri accused Mujuru when she knew very well that both of them were survivors (victims).
“It is very sad that Muchinguri can accuse Teurai [Mujuru] when she is aware that both of them are victims,” she said with tears in her eyes.
“We had tasked them to raise the issue once we were back but they forgot, probably because of the comfort they were now enjoying.”
A Chinhoyi-based single parent and female war veteran agreed, saying most of her colleagues in the struggle were abused despite their positions.
She said most of them failed to get married because most ordinary people did not understand them or feared their past.
“Most of us were abused including those in higher positions by these chefs during the war of liberation and we agreed while in Mozambique that we would push for compensation back home,” said the ex-freedom fighter.
“But after independence the women in higher offices including Muchinguri and Mujuru dragged their feet saying it was disrespectful to our leaders…zvino chaipa chii? [what has gone wrong?]”
But their male counterparts said sex among ex-combatants was consensual even with the povo (civilians).
This article was originally published by the Standard newspaper.
“ZANU PF bigwigs and ex-Zanla commanders who fought in the war of liberation, have been fingered in the case of rampant sexual abuse of female combatants who now demand compensation for their suffering.”
Wow. Is that all the Bigwigs and Commanders?
Most of us who were of age and were in then country during the war have always maintained that the so-called war vets (in actual fact O vets) engaged much less in fighting Rhodesian forces and more in sexual orgies with zvibwidos (female war collaborators) as well as mutilation of innocent civilians on mostly unfounded allegations of witchcraft and selling-out.
(I for one, 1st came face to face nemagandanga when I was 9 yrs, in 1976, and thereafter attended I uncountable pungwes – were I witnessed very traumatizing atrocities perpetrated by the same. Not to mention that, I also ran some arrands on the orders of the same O-vets when we would be asked to areas were Rhodesian forces would have been spotted and identify their numbers and the type of guns in their possession – particularly the number of NATO’s, the one which the O vets hated/feared most. After telling them they would always run away anyway; and never move in to attack. In fact over the years I have always questioned why these guyz would put us at risk to get to close proximity of deadly armed people when all they would do after informing them what we would have observer was to run away.)
May be, food for thought: Should only those who even in many cases enjoyed the sex be the only ones to be compensated or a host of us who have struggle stories to tell? Surely, chibwidos seemed to enjoy every bit of the sex escapades the had with the “Cdes”; and have no doubt even those who were in Moza, Tanzania, etc, did. They may deny it now but most did, at least back then. Vasikana vaitoda kuti pagroup rakati wangu ndiCde nhingi-nhingi, vamwe vachito royana nekutengesana chaiko. Saka hatingamboti vanhu ava vanga vasinga nakirani – apo tinganyepa.
First things first, what about the multitude of women who were raped , mutilated and pregnanted during the war. They also deserve compensation so u Oppah in the power ring if u are genuine start by standing for them and whilst u are at it consider the Gukurahundi issue otherwise just shut up. Selfishness, selfishness me first and nothing else. We feel bad for treatment u got but start advocating for first things first or if u know the perpetrators of your crimes take them to court u have enough looted dollars to hire flashy lawyers!!!