War veterans leader and minister Christopher Mutsvangwa says he will always respect former Vice-President Joice Mujuru because she was his commander during the liberation struggle but he cannot allow her to take credit for shooting down a Rhodesian military helicopter single-handedly because the war was not about individual heroics and there were no Rambos.
According to NewZimbabwe.Com, Mutsvangwa, who first raised this point last year in the run-up to the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front congress which saw Mujuru being booted out of the party, told a Samora Machel 2015 Memorial lecture on Monday that Mujuru’s participation in the liberation struggle was never questioned.
“She was my commander and she was the first woman I saw who had been trained; I wasn’t. I was coming from University. I have so much respect for her and I will never stop respecting her from that aspect,” he said.
What was unacceptable, he said, was the claim that she single-handedly shot down a Rhodesian military helicopter.
“This was not a war about individual heroics. I did not survive because I was very smart at the battle field. No; I survived because the other guy shot the other enemy who wanted to shoot me. And then he/she got shot later because he or she had exposed themselves to the enemy. There were no Rambos in that war, women or otherwise….
“And makawanda ndege yobva yadonha wotanga kuti ndini ndakaidonhedza wazviziva sei? You are scared. This is a battlefield. Is the bullet written Mutsvangwa’s name?” he asked.
Mutsvangwa also said the security sector reform that some people were clamouring for was a no-go area.
“The defence forces is the most original institution this country has ever founded. We founded it dead body by dead body. We have no problem with political ideas as long as they do not threaten the State that we founded. This nonsense about security sector reform will never be tolerated,” he said.
“There will be blood if people try and play around with the security services. That is a no go area and do not even try it……”