Story by Josephine Mugiyo, Diplomatic Correspondent
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa says Zimbabweans are a peaceful people by nature, urging the nation’s citizens to be remembered for uniting and building their own country.
He said this at a field day held at his Pricabe Farm in Kwekwe this Saturday.
President Mnangagwa’s call comes as the country prepares to hold general elections this year.
The President, who addressed thousands of people at the field day, said regime change elements almost succeeded in sowing disunity but Zimbabweans are now united.
“We just maintain this peace and tranquility. Sanctions were imposed with the view of creating disharmony among the people so that there could be regime change. At one stage they almost succeeded but now that is not the case. We are getting more and more united. In Shona we say in a family not all members of the family will pull in the same direction, one or two will pull in the opposite direction. This happens in our country and it does not make us lose sleep. In fact, we sleep better if we know who is pulling in the opposite direction.”
The President said people should strive to be remembered for building their country.
“Be remembered for building your country, not for destroying your country. Be remembered for uniting people, not for dis-uniting people. Be remembered for building not destroying. So according to our Shona culture if a man or a woman preaches peace and harmony, when they die we deep the grave where we buried them, but those who are found to be destructive when they die we plough crops on the grave. I for one would like to be remembered for peace, production and building our country.”
The issue of drug abuse among youths and bullying continues to be a cause for concern and President Mnangagwa said Zimbabweans must unite in fighting the problem.
“There is a disease that has gripped our nation, we must fight drug abuse at community and household level. It’s not an issue which you say the government must fight, let us all fight it. Let’s expose those who bring the drugs. I have given instructions to the police to apprehend all who are high, school authorities who pay a blind eye to bullying will have a case to answer,” said the President.
“I’m told a tendency is coming up of bullying in schools. That should stop now. I’m told in some instances kids kill each other. That should stop. We are looking at how to deal with this issue and any school management found wanting, we will deal with them. Also we need peace from the grassroots.”
President Mnangagwa called on churches to also play their part in dealing with drug abuse and bullying.