BULAWAYO – Zanu PF heavyweights have clashed over the party’s refusal to confer Adam Ndlovu with national hero status.
Adam, together with a female passenger Nomqhele Tshili, perished in a fatal car crash last weekend that also critically injured Ndlovu’s younger brother, Peter.
The 39-year-old Peter, a Zimbabwe international soccer player boasting over 400 appearances for Coventry City, Birmingham City, Huddersfield and Sheffield United.
Addressing mourners at Adam’s home on Friday night, Zanu PF politburo member, resident minister and governor for Matabeleland South, Angeline Masuku, dismissed the party‘s secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa’s sentiments early this week that the soccer legend was not a hero.
“Anybody who is saying Adam is not a hero does not know what he is talking about,” Masuku said.
“He is not in his right senses. Adam was the cream in our football fraternity. I would like to thank the Bulawayo City Council for allowing Adam to be buried where great heroes like Lookout Masuku are buried.”
Masuku is a former Zipra commander who served as the deputy commander of the Zimbabwe National Army until his arrest in 1982 for allegedly plotting to overthrow President Robert Mugabe.
Police detained him under emergency regulations and was incarcerated. The government released Masuku because of poor health and he died soon after in 1986 of meningitis.
Mutasa early this week said Adam cannot be accorded hero status because Zimbabwe has never given the status to any sportsperson ever.
House of Assembly speaker Lovemore Moyo told mourners: “You do not need an Oxford dictionary to describe Adam as a hero. He is better than many of us who claimed to have served the country. All Zimbabweans are equal. We should emulate what he did.”
Adam and his brother Peter were on their way to Victoria Falls for a social soccer match when Peter’s BMW X5 vehicle burst a tyre and veered off the road. It uprooted three trees. The tragic accident occurred near the Victoria Falls Airport. Adam died on his way to hospital while Tshili died on the spot.
Adam was buried yesterday at Lady Stanley Cemetery in Bulawayo. Earlier on Friday, his casket was paraded in the city.
The former Highlanders player, was a member of the popular Zimbabwe Dream Team coached in the 1990s by the late Reinhard Fabisch.
During his heyday, he played for FC Zurich in Switzerland, Moroka Swallows and Free State Stars in South Africa.
He is survived by his two daughters. At the time of his death, Adam was the coach of Bulawayo-based Premier League side, Chicken Inn. – Daily News