Honouring Dr Gabriel Mkhumane, 10 years on
This year marks the ten year anniversary of the brutal asssassination of then PUDEMO Deputy President Dr Gabriel Mkhumane in Nelspruit
On that fateful day the people of Swaziland and the Diplomatic circles lost a leader, a father a visionary and a servant. There is no way to measure the loss that PUDEMO as a movement and the people of Swaziland suffered. To those of us who are family its even deeper. Call it triple tragedy if you w...ill. Gabriel was a rare breed of political leaders who could see far beyond most. When he was our chairperson at the university, presiding over all foreign students at the university he proved himself beyond doubt he is destined for greater things.
Today as our movement faces one of it's worst paralysis one can't help but wonder how things would have been with Mkhumane at the helm of the PUDEMO. PUDEMO today lacks the decisive visionary and practical leadership of Dokotela. We lack passion and dedication, selflessness and people- first attitude. If he was still alive he would not omly have stood up against this casual aproach to the struggle but would have dirtied his hands in building a movement that can fight.
Is this too difficulat to ask from teh current leadership of our movement? Is it too much a task?
As he used to teach
"the struggle is not for the faint hearted, its not for those who seek personal gratification and is not for those whose pre occupation is lamentation. It is for those who are willing and prepared to do the dirty work, put their lives in danger and expect no reward..."
One of the things I hope I will achieve this year is to go back to Cuba, be part of the annual Brigade that has shaped many a leaders and activists to appreciate people service and people centred leadership. I will take the opportunity to visit his former university and interview some of his former lecturers.
As I close ": Dear Dr Mkhumane, I wish to be like you; serve, serve , and serve my people, just like you did. May your shinning exemplary leadership reveal, guide and direct a new crop of leadeship to take your PUDEMO to where it should be "
We will not forget you.
A personal reflection by Skhumbuzo Phakathi, PUDEMO NEC Member