ED Promises War Vets Medical Aid After 44 Years Waiting
23 May 2024
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Zimbabwe Announces Long-Awaited Medical Aid and Economic Support for War Veterans.

Joseph Chinotimba and Jabulani Sibanda

Harare, Zimbabwe – In a move that has caught the attention of many, Emmerson Mnangagwa has announced a new package of medical aid and economic opportunities for war veterans, who have waited 44 years for such recognition. The announcement comes on the heels of another significant political gesture—a compensation plan for dispossessed white farmers that was unveiled just last week.

During a passionate address to members of the War Veterans League, President Mnangagwa pledged comprehensive support, saying, “My administration is ready to facilitate the broad-based empowerment of your membership so that you fully participate in the economy, as well as the ongoing industrialisation, modernisation, and national development agenda.”

This policy shift is seen as part of a broader effort to secure support ahead of Zanu PF’s elective congress later this year. Mnangagwa’s administration has faced criticism over the delayed fulfillment of promises to veterans, a crucial constituency that has shown signs of growing impatience.

The President has tasked the Ministry of Veterans of the Liberation Struggle Affairs and the War Veterans Board with expediting the implementation of these new benefits. “As the lead ministry and institutions administering key legislative functions concerning war veterans of the liberation struggle, you must be innovative, work harder, and make strategic decisions to cater to the welfare and concerns of our veterans,” Mnangagwa stated.

He also emphasized the importance of unity and political consciousness among the veterans, urging them to develop and implement programs that support the restructuring and re-organization of the War Veterans League. This includes organization from the local to the national level, adhering to the party’s stringent constitutional democratic processes.

The announcement has been met with mixed reactions. While many veterans welcome the long-overdue recognition and support, others remain skeptical about the timing and the actual implementation of these promises.

Political analysts suggest that this strategic move is not only about addressing the grievances of war veterans but also about solidifying a base of support in the face of potential challenges within the party and the broader political landscape of Zimbabwe.

As Zimbabwe heads towards its elective congress, the eyes of the nation and international observers will be closely watching how these new policies unfold and their impact on the political stability of the country.