Former Education Minister David Coltart has apologised for atrocities committed by the Rhodesian regime of Ian Smith piling pressure on President Emmerson Mnangagwa to apologise for his role in the Gukurahundi massacres of the 1980s.
Coltart said he had been subjected to a “sustained social media campaign” seeking to portray him as an unrepentant Rhodesian who refused to condemn atrocities committed by Rhodesian security services.
He said he had even been accused of killing black Zimbabweans during his time as a police officer in Rhodesia but denied ever killing anyone except disposing of the dead body of a guerrilla, who had been shot and killed in a gunfight with Rhodesian forces, down a mineshaft.
There has been intense pressure on Mnangagwa to apologise for the Gukurahundi massacres in which up to 20 000 people are said to have been killed.
Mnangagwa, who was Minister of State Security at the time, has refused to take sole responsibility and apologise but says his government has set up a National Peace and Reconciliation Commission to look into such matters.
He said he will appear before that commission if asked to.
Below is Coltart’s apology:
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