President Robert Mugabe has described the late national hero, Brigadier General James Murozvi whose Chimurenga name was Cde James Tichatonga as a dedicated cadre who committed himself to fighting for the liberation of the country.

Addressing mourners at the National Heroes Acre in Harare today at the burial of Brigadier General Murozvi, the President said the fact that the national hero abandoned his teacher training course to join the liberation struggle showed that he was dedicated to the cause of the country.

“The late Brigadier General Murozvi’s life is characterised by acts of valour and supreme sacrifice for his beloved country, his family, which he had to leave behind, when he decided to join the trail to Mozambique, like many young men and women of his age. Leaving the country to join the liberation struggle was in itself an act of bravery and chilvalry, which very few men and women voluntarily undertook at the time,” said President Mugabe.

President Mugabe also said the late national hero was full of respect unlike others who abuse their war credentials.

“James was different from those who thought being a war veteran is license to do whatever they wished to. He was a totally different person as he placed the party ahead of his personal interests. He knew that the party leads the people,” he said.

He said after being seconded to the Ministry of Welfare Services of War Veterans, War Collaborators, Political Detainees and Restrictees as Principal Director, he never complained as he knew that the Zanu PF party leads ahead of other things.

Before independence, Brigadier General Murozvi took various assignments including being in charge of the education department in Beira, Mozambique which took care of school children’s needs.

“In recognition of his selfless dedication to the liberation struggle and loyal service to Zimbabwe, the late Brigadier General received the following medals: the Liberation Medal, the Independence Medal, 10 Years Service Medal, 15 Year Long and Exemplary Service Medal, the Mozambique Campaign Medal, Democratic Republic of Congo Campaign Medal and the Grand Officer of the Zimbabwe Order of Merit Award,” said Cde Mugabe.

He also challenged all Zimbabweans to emulate the departed heroes.

“The hallmark in life of a national hero is dedication to a cause. All our national heroes who lie at this National Shrine fought for a cause, the common cause of our independence, the common cause to foster unity, peace and development. What is your cause today? It certainly can’t be a departure from our common cause, the revolutionary cause?” President Mugabe said.

Brigadier General Murozvi collapsed and died at his home in Harare on Thursday.

He was suffering from diabetes for some time.

Brigadier General Murozvi was born in Bikita, Masvingo Province on June 2, 1956 and joined the liberation struggle in September 1976.

Cde Murozvi received his initial military training at Takawira Base in Mozambique in 1977 before receiving regular cadet officer training at Nachingueya Base in Tanzania.

After the attainment of independence, he was one of the leading former ZANLA officers who played a pivotal role in the integration of ZANLA, ZIPRA and former Rhodesian forces to form the ZNA.

He rose through the ranks in the ZNA and boasts of a number of medals that include the Liberation, Independence, Ten Year Service, 15 Years, Mozambqiue campaign, the DRC campaign medals and the Grand Officer of the Zimbabwe Order Merit Award.

Brigadier General Murozvi is survived by his wife, Group Captain Joice Murozvi and four children.