Fellow Zimbabweans,
It is my singular honour and privilege to address the nation on this historic 40th
Commemoration of our National Heroes Day. This occasion occupies a special place in
our history and development as a nation as we remember and pay tribute to our
dear countrymen and women who paid the supreme sacrifice for the liberation of our
country.

Today we are holding our commemorations against the background of renewed glaring,
and unjustified attacks by our perennial detractors, both inside and outside our borders. Let us however, not lose heart or be discouraged but look back to our rich history and draw lessons from our departed, who since the 1890s, united and showed resilience in their gallant fight against oppressive forces.

As the heroes of yesteryear, today we have no alternative; we must as Zimbabweans
close ranks by uniting, in peace, harmony and with resolute patriotism and self love to
chart a brighter future for ourselves and for the sake of our motherland.

Our position is clear; a firm foundation has been laid and continues to be strengthened
for a thriving constitutional democracy, and a just, open, accountable and prosperous
society. With unfaltering determination, and emboldened by the experiences of the
unrelenting attacks on our country in the past two decades, we know that the future is
bright. Our success is inevitable.

The divisive falsehoods and concoctions by renegades and supremacists who want to
pounce on our natural resources will never win the day. Truth shall triumph over lies,
and good over evil.

Viva Zimbabwe! Viva Zimbabwe! Forward ever, backward never!\

Comrades and Friends;
Today’s 40th National Heroes Day Anniversary celebrations are regrettably being held
in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hence, our event today will not have the usual
fanfare as we have to be in compliance with the World Health Organisation’s Guidelines. Be that as it may, our commemorations are uniquely significant in that we are combining the recognition of heroes and heroines of both the First and Second Chimurenga/ Umvukhela.

In this regard, the mounting of the Statue of Mbuya Nehanda in Harare, our Capital
City, will immortalise the supreme sacrifice that was paid by our forbears. The location
of this Statue carries added historical meaning because the intersection of Samora
Machel Avenue and Julius Nyerere Way is the spot where Mbuya Nehanda used to
rest and drink water from a river that flowed at the site.

Other heroes and heroines from the early wars of resistance will also be honoured in a
similar manner. Among them, General Mtshane Khumalo, who commanded the Imbizo
Regiment, under King Lobengula, that defeated the Allan Wilson Patrol at the Battle of
Pupu on 10 December, 1893.

Other distinguished heroes and heroines of the First Chimurenga/ Umvukhela such as
Sekuru Kaguvi, Chaminuka, Mkwati, Queen Lozikeyi Khumalo, Chinengundu,
Mashayamombe, Mgandani Dlodlo, Chiwashira, Muchecheterwa, Chingaira Makoni, and
Mapondera, among others, will be accorded appropriate recognition.

From the Second Chimurenga/ Umvukhela, the late General Josiah Magama
Tongogara and General Alfred Nikita Mangena, Cde Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Cde
Joshua Mqhabuko Nkomo and Cde Simon Vengesai Muzenda, among others, will also
be honoured.

We must as a people appropriate our liberation war heritage and shape the narratives
by telling our own journey to freedom and independence. As such, my Administration
shall expedite the documentation of the story of our liberation struggle and the
associated historical heritage. The programme of renaming roads, buildings and
prominent public infrastructure with names reflective of the country’s history is ongoing
and a key feature of our Liberation War Heritage.

The list of our national monuments is being reviewed to include liberation war shrines
such as the 1893 Pupu Shrine, the 1966 Chinhoyi battle site and the Kamugoma
massacre site of 1978, in Masvingo. Other sites such as the National and Provincial
Heroes’ Acres, Assembly Points as well as former detention and restriction centres
have also been made national monuments. Meanwhile, liberation war shrines in
neighbouring Mozambique and Zambia will continue to be rehabilitated.

The Sunday Mail, The Sunday News and New Ziana are commended for producing
Chimurenga Files. As part of this year’s commemorations, the Second Edition of the
Honours and Awards Booklet will be published under the theme “Celebrating 40
Years of Independence and Democracy under the Second Republic”. Leveraging
on Information Communication Technologies, more people must have access to the
grand story of our liberation including those in the Diaspora.

These initiatives must help us to rekindle our national identity, pride, dignity, and
culture. Such is the heritage we must bequeath to the future generations.

At the continental level, Zimbabwe is honoured to be the host of the Museum of the
African Liberation History, which catalogues African history and resistance to colonial
oppression from the 1890s until the attainment of political independence.

Fellow Zimbabweans,

The 40th Heroes Day Anniversary comes at a time when the 2nd Republic is
accelerating our national development. This is in spite of the continued illegal sanctions
imposed by some Western countries, coupled with the negative impact of climate
change which has grossly affected our economic growth projections.

The land was one of the major reasons the country’s gallant sons and daughters took up
arms to fight for the liberation of our beloved country.

The 2nd Republic under my administration continues to consolidate the gains of the
revolution. We shall never betray the principles of the revolution. The blood of those
who fought for our land shall forever be honoured through the maximum use of our land.

In this quest, my administration embarked on the First Phase of the Land Audit which
has now been completed. Under-utilized land identified through the audit will be allocated in line with Government Policy. To further stimulate productivity, a multi-pronged Agriculture Recovery Plan is being rolled out. This will result in increased productivity of maize, wheat, soya beans, and traditional grains. Similarly, the implementation of the Pfumvudza Concept is progressing well and will see a transformation to food security at the household level.

Farmers are encouraged to honour the departed heroes by taking full advantage of the
recapitalisation of the Command Agriculture programme, dam construction, irrigation
development and mechanisation programmes which my administration is undertaking
in partnership with the private sector.The setting of pre-planting producer prices as an
incentive together with the Growth Plan must give impetus to our farmers to boost
production and productivity.

The land that our heroes fought for includes all that which is under that land. The
Strategic Roadmap for the attainment of a US$12 billion Mining Sector by 2023 is on
course. In line with this policy, the use it or lose it principle is being strictly enforced
in order to unlock resources for enhanced production. The Mines and Minerals Act
[Chapter 21:05] is being amended into a competitive, modern, investor-friendly, and
supportive law that will benefit the majority of our people.

Through robust modern and innovative synergies between the ministries of Energy and
Mines, Zimbabwe is on track to emerge as a net exporter of energy by 2023. These
are the emerging new realities that we are celebrating at this 40th Heroes Day
Commemorations.

Fellow Zimbabweans,
The 2nd Republic’s vision of a private sector-led industrial development is gaining
momentum. In this regard, the Zimbabwe National Industrialisation Policy Framework with
its focus on the resuscitation of industry, the establishment of new industries, export
development, innovation and rural industry systems is beginning to bear fruit.

The translation of knowledge into goods and services being spearheaded by the
Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology
Development through Education 5.0 will further accelerate sustainable socio-economic
modernisation and transformation.

Considerable road construction and rehabilitation are underway throughout our country.
Two days ago, I was pleased to officially open a portion of the Harare-Masvingo-Beitbridge highway. This attests to our abilities as people to use our own local skills and resources to improve our infrastructure and overall quality of life.

In line with our Devolution Policy, the Tourism Recovery and Growth Strategy I
launched last week will result in a broader geographical spread of tourism development
with benefits accruing to the whole nation. In addition, the devolution policy has begun
to enhance the democratic participation of our communities in decision making.

This is in turn promoting good governance, equalisation, and development that leaves
no one behind, in our bid to maintain a prosperous unitary Zimbabwe. This is the
multi-faceted heritage bequeathed to us by the heroes and heroines we are
remembering today.

The recently introduced macro-economic stabilisation measures have had the effect of
stabilising our currency and reducing volatility in the prices of goods and services as
well as creating a conducive business environment.

Comrades and Friends;
My Government continues to prioritise the security and welfare of vulnerable citizens
through the Food Deficit Mitigation Programme. Other social protection measures have
been scaled-up for persons living with disabilities and those left vulnerable as a result
of the COVID-19 pandemic. The provision of decent housing, quality healthcare, water, and sanitation remain important promises we must deliver in honor of our fallen
heroes.

Our war of liberation was fought with the support and solidarity of many international friends and partners. Zimbabwe’s foreign policy continues to be focused on engagement and re-engagement with other countries for mutual benefit.

Fellow Zimbabweans;

The Second Republic has, since its inception, accelerated the entrenchment and consolidation of democracy, constitutionalism, and the rule of law in pursuit of social justice and equal opportunities for the economic empowerment of the previously marginalised majority.

Informed by a cardinal ethos during the liberation struggle, the 2nd Republic’s trust in the fight against corruption is unwavering. My administration, therefore, makes no apologies for fixing our systems across the socio, economic, and political spectrum.

Accountability and transparency will keep on being enforced in every facet of our society.

The door to the old manner of doing things is closed. The corrupt way is shut and those who choose that route will face dire consequences.

Peace, unity, harmony, and love are prerequisites for the achievement of our country’s
prosperity and sustainable socio-economic development.

We are forever grateful to our security service sector, which continues to protect our independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity.

In view of the upsurge of COVID-19 infections and deaths, we all need to be more vigilant in fighting this scourge. We must all adhere to the World Health Organisation, WHO, guidelines which include wearing masks, social distancing, and practicing good hygiene. The government will continue to scale up testing, contact tracing, and isolating those who have tested positive.

Fellow Compatriots,
Thank you for joining us at this commemorative event. I once again exhort you to remain
united as we face the years ahead, inspired by those who paid the supreme price to
liberate our beloved country. May the souls of our departed heroes and heroines rest in
eternal peace. May we who remain continue to work tirelessly for the prosperity of our
motherland, Zimbabwe.

In unity and love, nothing is impossible. Forward ever, backward never.
Long live our heroes and heroines!
Long live our unity, peace, and freedom!
Long live Zimbabwe!
God bless you all.
God bless Zimbabwe!

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