Thousands attend Hero Nyakauru’s memorial service

Thousands of MDC members including President Tsvangirai and relatives of the late Sekuru Rwisai Nyakauru on Saturday attended his memorial service at Nyakomba Village in Nyanga. Sekuru Nyakauru, 82, died in April from injuries he sustained after he was abducted and assaulted by Zanu PF supporters and state security agents in February.

Sekuru Rwisai Nyakauru
Sekuru Rwisai Nyakauru

He and 34 MDC members including Hon Douglas Mwonzora, the party’s national spokesperson were later arrested and spent 27 days at the Mutare Remand Prison.

President Tsvangirai said he saluted the courage shown by Sekuru Nyakauru in fighting for real change and his spirit would live on. “The death of Sekuru Nyakauru is now part of our history,” President Tsvangirai said. “His death has shown that violence is now a religion in Zanu PF. You can kill but you cannot destroy the spirit of the people. If you have lost support of the people, resign. Don’t force the people to support you,”

Quoting 1 Corinthians Chapter 13 verse 1 – 2 that reads; “Though I speak with the tongues of men and angels, but have not love, I have become a sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but I have no love, I am nothing”, President Tsvangirai said the Bible verse showed that Zanu PF had no love for the people of Zimbabwe.

“However, on violence perpetrated by Zanu PF, the MDC is saying enough is enough. The MDC is not a party of violence but we want to bring peace and harmony in the country. The selfless commitment that we have in the MDC is to have peace in the country,” he said.

President Tsvangirai said the people had gathered at Nyakomba Village to celebrate the life of real change hero. “Not heroes in Zanu PF who are called heroes for killing innocent people. I urge the children of Sekuru Nyakauru and the Nyakomba community to emulate what your father did.”

On elections, President Tsvangirai said the country was preparing for elections and Zanu PF would resort to violence but will never win any free and fair election. “That is why they are confused on whether we will have elections this year or next year. But as MDC we are calling for free and fair elections. If Zanu PF wants elections this year let them go ahead and see how and if they will govern,” he said.

MDC Secretary General, Hon. Tendai Biti said the death of Sekuru Nyakauru was similar to that of thousands other MDC members who have been murdered by Zanu PF and state security agents in the fight for real change in the country. “But God doesn’t give you a burden that you cannot defeat. We have been given Mugabe and Zanu PF as our burden and we will surely defeat them,” he said.

Hon. Mwonzora said despite being in remand prison for a month, Sekuru Nyakauru came out of prison more determined to continue fighting for real change. “When we got to prison he was very sick and at one time collapsed, vomiting blood. Prison officers would not take him to a civilian hospital believing they could treat him there,” Hon. Mwonzora who shared the same prison cell with Sekuru Nyakauru said.

Some of the people who have been implicated in the abduction of Sekuru Nyakauru are Wilfred Pokoto, Tawonga Mutsiwawo and Kilborn Masunungure. Pokoto especially was mentioned as having assaulted the 82 year old using a ‘safety’ shoe, that had an iron tip inside the front shoe end.

Scores of senior MDC officials and most of the activists who were in detention with Sekuru Nyakauru attended the memorial service. They included, the deputy Treasurer-General, Hon. Elton Mangoma, national Organising Secretary Hon. Nelson Chamisa and his deputy Hon. Abednico Bhebhe, Women’s Assembly Chairperson, Hon. Theresa Makone, Manicaland Provincial Chairperson, Julius Magarangoma, Media, Information and Publicity deputy Minister, Hon. Murisi Zwizwai, Youth Assembly Spokesperson, Clifford Hlatywayo and Reverend Sebastian Bakare.

Reverend Bakare is the current Anglican Bishop of the Diocese of Harare. He was one of the well-wishers who visited Sekuru Nyakauru and the other detainees while they were in prison.

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