The leaders of Zimbabwe’s two main political parties delivered conflicting heroes commemoration day messages today, one hailed free and fair elections while the other criticised the senseless loss of lives due to military involvement in elections and politics.

Zimbabwe’s  President, Emmerson Mnangagwa said Zimbabweans should unite to build a beautiful country.

Addressing supporters who attended the national Heroes Day commemorations at the National Heroes Acre today,  Mnangagwa said elections are over and it’s time for everyone regardless of their background to focus on the future.

“Let us move forward with the same determination and a single mind, after all we share the same vision and dream for the country,” he said.

In his speech, Mnangagwa hailed the disputed 2018 elections as free, fair and credible.

Meanwhile, MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa also delivered his Heroes Day message early today. While referring a lot to those who fought colonists in the armed struggle, he also focused on families affected by election related atrocities in post independent Zimbabwe.

He paid tribute to those who lost their lives to give birth to a “one person one vote” Zimbabwe.

“This day, I call upon every Zimbabwean, local or abroad, to take a moment to observe and honour those who lost their lives for this beloved and beautiful country, Zimbabwe. My heart is with all the grieving families of the dear depart.. My new Zimbabwe pledge is a people’s republic where everyone’s safety, security and happiness are guaranteed,” he said.

Chamisa warned that the gains of independence will not be realised if the country’s military is a key player in the country’s elections.

“It is not possible to achieve this if we allow a militarised clique, that calls itself Zimbabwe stockholders, to unleash brute force against unarmed civilians in pursuit of electoral theft,” Chamisa added, referring to army shootings that claimed lives in Harare after polls.