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MDC T mourns Chief Bankwe Sibanda…the traditional leader who said NO to Mugabe

Chief Bankwe of Mberengwa West has died.

The youthful leader, in his 40s was born Lungile Sibanda. The chief passed on early this week and will be laid to rest on Saturday the 29 July 2017 at his home in Ward 32, Mberengwa West.

Mr Tinashe Gumbo, the party’s Shadow MP in Mberengwa West, who is also the MDC T’s Midlands South Provincial Vice Secretary consoled the family.

In a message conveyed through Councillor Reuben Jamela, Mr Gumbo said “On behalf of President Dr Morgan Richard Tsvangirai, the National leadership, Midlands South Chairman Mr Francisco Masendeke, PAC, PEC, all districts,wards and branches, Chairman Simon Ncube and Ward 32 and its five branches and indeed on my own behalf, I wish to convey to the Bankwe family our heartfelt condolences following the passing on of our dear Chief Bankwe this week.

“MDC T as a people’s party will continue to value the role of our traditional leaders.

As the custodians of our culture, the traditional leaders will be critical in our new Zimbabwe.

As a government, we shall ensure that their welfare is taken care of. Most importantly, we shall ensure that their role and position in society is not compromised by politiciabs. They will freely contribute to the nation building project that the MDC T government will lead,” he said.

Mr Gumbo went on to say that the MDC T joins the people of Bankwe across the political divide during this darkest hour.

He further indicated that Chief Bankwe has been unique in how he executed his duties as a traditional leader.

The Midlands South junior secretary shared how he personally benefited from the Chief in his struggle for a better Mberengwa West and indeed a free Zimbabwe.

The Mberengwa West Shadow MP was visibly shaken by the death of what he called his model Chief.

He promised to continue with such good working relationship with the Chief’ s successor and the rest of the traditional leaders in his quest for a democratic Zimbabwe.

The various people who spoke to echoes from Mberengwa shared that indeed the Chief represented a rare breed of traditional leaders in Zimbabwe.

He stood for his people despite the fact that his ward always faced “revenge” from the government and the local ZANU PF MP Joram Gumbo for always voting for change.

ZANU PF tried in vain to monopolise Chief Bankwe. The Chief openly confessed to progressive and pro democracy forces that he surely did not like his roles being compromised by politicians.

MDC T has religiously won this single ward. It is the only ward out of 37 wards in the four Mberengwa Constituencies that has remained in the hands of the opposition.

The MDC T Presidential and MP candidates also scored high in the ward during the successive elections.

All this can be greatly explained by the progressive character of the now late Chief Bankwe.

If only Zimbabwe had more of such progressive traditional leaders, the country would be certainly rich in many ways.

Tinashe Gumbo encourages all party members from across the wards to attend the funeral of our leader.

echoes from mberengwa

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