Zim govt says exiled Thomas Mapfumo safe to return

By Arts Writer

INFORMATION, Publicity, and Broadcasting Services permanent secretary, Nick Mangwana says self-exiled Chimurenga artist Thomas Mukanya Mapfumo is welcome to visit Zimbabwe.

This was after Mapfumo’s claims that he would not travel to Zimbabwe to attend the burial of his brother and band percussionist, Lancelot Mapfumo, who died last month, because he is terrified of being targeted by the government.

Mangwana, on the other hand, promised Mapfumo of his safety.

We wish to express our sincere condolences to Mr Thomas Mapfumo over the sad loss of his younger brother, Lancelot (MHSRIP). We wish to advise Mr Mapfumo that he has nothing to fear in Zimbabwe. The security of his person is as assured as the rest of us.

Nick Mangwana

Mapfumo, a staunch government critic, left the country in 2001 following persecution by the Robert Mugabe-led regime.

He was critical of the country’s governance system, a theme inherent in his songs. Before independence, Mukanya was jailed by the Smith regime for his strong stance against human rights abuses.

In 2008, Mapfumo failed to attend his mother’s funeral, burial or memorial service also citing the possibility that authorities would harass him, or worse.

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