Dumiso Dabengwa refuses to be buried at Heroes Acres.
Dabengwa who is affectionately known as ‘The Black Russian’ made it explicitly clear when he was still alive that he did not want to be buried at the National Heroes Acre, arguing that it had become too politicised with a number of his fellow cadres from Zapu being denied the status. Zapu acting president Isaac Mabuka told a press conference last week.
Zapu leader and liberation war hero Dumiso Dabengwa who died last week while in transit from receiving treatment in India will be buried at his family’s heroes acre in Ntabazinduna after his family adhered to his wishes. Dabengwa was declared a national hero by President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government.
He was explicitly not to go to Heroes Acre. He used to say he will prefer to be buried at his family‘s heroes acre in Ntabazinduna than to be buried at the Heroes Acre. These were the sentiments which he used to tell us as Zapu. We cannot mince our words on this one.
As a second fall-back, we would rather prefer Lady Stanley Cemetery where his friends are buried. Whether Zanu PF declares him a hero or not, he is a hero. He does not have to be declared by anyone to be a hero,
The Chronicle reports that the government has said that it will adhere to the family’s wishes with Vice President Kembo Mohadi saying,
They indicated to us that he had said that he wanted to be buried next to his mother and as the Government, we are not against that. We have done it before, (National University of Science and Technology founding Vice Chancellor) Professor (Phineas) Makhurane was buried at his homestead and (musician Oliver) Mtukudzi was also buried at his homestead.
However, the Government will take over all the expenses and everything that is required towards the burial will be borne by the Government until the day he is interred.
Unfortunately the body could not come in this plane, we were told that the holding is very small so the body remained behind. We are making arrangements that his body is flown to Zimbabwe.