The late Reverend and Zanu founder, prolific author, Ndabaningi Sithole’s family will be celebrating what would have been his 100th birthday with the launch of the Ndabaningi Sithole Foundation (NSF) next Tuesday.
The launch was initially planned as a get together in Harare, but, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the launch will now be held virtually and will be hosted through Facebook and Zoom.
The Foundation was established by the family, friends and well-wishers of Reverend Sithole to celebrate, honour and perpetuate his legacy as an advocate for civil rights, pan African democracy, as well as social and economic development in both pre- and post- independent Zimbabwe and Africa at large.
Reverend Sithole who died in 2000 published 12 books in his lifetime and penned numerous articles, other booklets and a mammoth volume of letters, which collectively provided a frontline perspective on African nationalism, pan Africanism and the liberation of Zimbabwe. Fortunately, for Zimbabweans and fellow Africans, the Foundation aims to republish these works and to share his legacy with the nation.
Among other objectives, the NSF seeks to promote transparent discourse on Zimbabwe’s liberation, both Chimurenga 1 and 2 and promote reconciliation, peace with justice, unity and national healing.
In a statement, Retired Bishop Chad Nicholas Gandiya who is the chairperson of the foundation said: “On the day, we look forward to welcoming guests who will include contemporaries of the Reverend, friends, academics, clergy, local and diaspora Zimbabweans and Africans, diplomats, politicians, but above all, and most importantly, students and young people to whom the shared legacy of our great country, should represent peace with justice for reconciliation and unity.”
To mark the launch of the Foundation, a Third Edition of Sithole’s signature book, African Nationalism, first published in 1959 which inspired many leading African nationalists of his era and after, will be released with a foreword by former Prime Minister of Kenya, His Excellency Raila Odinga, EGH, who will also give the Keynote Launch address.
“His Excellency, Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, was personally acquainted with the late Reverend Ndabaningi Sithole and his own ongoing role in peace building, reconciliation and unity in Kenya makes him a befitting keynote speaker for our launch, and an inspiration for similar pursuits in Zimbabwe and Africa at large.”
The launch will be held under the theme of ‘Zimbabwe’s Shared Legacy: A Foundation of Peace with Justice for Reconciliation and Unity’.
To achieve its objectives, the Foundation has embarked on the following initial initiatives – Reverend Ndabaningi Sithole African Research Center (a scholarly research centre/library which shall house the Reverend Sithole’s published and unpublished works, and accounts of other uncelebrated liberation heroes) – The Ndabaningi Sithole Foundation Scholarship (in collaboration with the University of Reading, United Kingdom – a scholarship for African citizens seeking to undertake MA and/or PHD studies in African history) – Annual Ndabaningi Sithole Commemoration lectures (in partnership with think tanks and/or tertiary education institutions to commemorate his life) and Civil society engagement (to promote and facilitate peace, national healing and development).