Mbete who is also the national chairperson of the ruling African National Congress (ANC) was addressing mourners at the burial of Lesabe at her Fort Rixon farm on Saturday.She said Lesabe who together with other Zapu leaders worked with the ANC during the struggle was a natural leader whose obituary should be turned into a book for Africans to learn from.ANC leaders visited Lesabe when she was admitted at a Johannesburg hospital in December.
Over 1000 mourners across political divide, ambassadors, civil society activists, relatives and ordinary Zimbabweans attended the burial ceremony.The ceremony brought together politicians from all the political organisations in the country.The entire Zanu (PF leadership in Matabeleland attended the ceremony.
MDC leader Welshman Ncube and some from the MDC-T also attended the burial ceremony.
“ Every paragraph of her obituary must be made a book. Lesabe was a natural leader, a heroine in her own right…she was not only a Zimbabwean hero.Her efforts are known beyond Zimbabwe, ” said Mbete.
“We have a lot to learn from the late Lesabe as people of Zimbabwe, South Africa and Africa as a whole as she was a true African heroine. She had true natural quality leadership qualities,” Mbete told the crowd.
MDC leader Ncube said: “ There is an argument about her heroine status but her liberation war history on its own shows she was a true heroine. ”
Simon Khaya Moyo, the Zanu (PF) national chairperson, said: “ People like Lesabe do not die, they depart to assume new responsibilities. We are all proud of her work, before, during and after independence. ”
Lesabe was once tipped to take over the post of vice-president after Joseph Msika,s death.She had been in and out of hospital in the past 12 months.She also spent more than a month receiving treatment in South Africa before she was taken home where she died at the United Bulawayo Hospitals.