At least 45 bishops and pastors from the Midlands Province toured the Chimoio shrines in Mozambique around Christmas time and declared the land redistribution programme initiated by Zanu-PF as a necessary move that should not be reversed.

They said reversing the land reform programme or backtracking on the indigenisation and economic empowerment thrust would be a betrayal of the liberation struggle.

Bishop George Mahwende of Living for Christ Ministries said they visited the shrines with the aim of seeing what they always heard about the place. “What we observed here really brings sorrow to our hearts and minds, the Bible is against such barbaric acts,” he said.

“We understand these men and women were unarmed at the time they were massacred. I personally wish all Zimbabweans would come here and see this, maybe their hearts will be changed and strive to fight for peace and preserve our independence which did not come cheap. As we are moving towards a referendum and elections, I want to urge my fellow Christians to vote wisely. President Robert Mugabe seems to be the only leader who has our nation at heart. We need to support him by our prayers.

If whites return to rule us we will be yoked like cattle and they will not let us free ever again.” Bishop Mahwende said the land was the only heritage that Zimbabweans could cherish forever as a way of honouring the fallen heroes of the struggle. “Opposition politicians who are against the land redistribution programme are surely misguiding the citizens of our beautiful country, these men and women lying here did not want anything else other than their fertile land,’ he said.

Apostle Garrison Zenda of Apostolic Faith Mission said the liberation struggle was favoured by God who continued to encourage men and women to join the struggle. “No one can give you courage to continue fighting for what is yours other than God,” he said.

“Whatever one does with faith, dedication and commitment, the Lord always makes sure that person succeeds. Many people who perished here were united for one purpose. They were united in the struggle. As the church, we have a role to play to make sure peace prevails forever.”

Pastor Addwell Mahobe of Dunamis Tabernacle Ministries said he was saddened to see that committed and dedicated sons and daughters of Zimbabwe were killed while fighting for something that rightfully belongs to them.

Operation Dingo, also known as the Chimoio massacre, was a major raid conducted by the Rhodesian Security Forces against the Zimbabwe African National Liberation Army headquarters of Robert Mugabe at Chimoio and a smaller camp at Tembue in Mozambique from November 23–25, 1977. More than 3,000 ZANLA fighters were reported as killed and 5,000 wounded while only two government troops died and six were wounded.