By A Correspondent- Co-Chairperson of the British All-Party Parliamentary Group for Zimbabwe Lord Oates has urged President Emmerson Mnangagwa to condemn the violence against political opponent MDC Alliance president Nelson Chamisa adding that political violence in all forms should not be tolerated.
His comment comes after Zanu Pf stalwarts are celebrating violence against president Chamisa’s convoy in Masvingo yesterday.
Deeply worrying to hear of the attack on opposition leader, Nelson Chamisa’s convoy. Important that @ZANUPF_Official & @edmnangagwa condemn such violence unreservedly & that @PoliceZimbabwe bring perpetrators to book. Political violence wherever it comes from should be condemned
Opposition MDC Alliance has said Masvingo has become a warzone after the aides of Nelson Chamisa, the party’s leader were viciously attacked by an alleged ZANU PF mob on Monday.
The party’s national spokesperson, advocate Fadzayi Mahere said the assailants were mobilised by ZANU PF provincial chair for Masvingo, Ezra Chadzamira in a bid to block Chamisa who has commenced his provincial tour. Said Mahere in a statement following attacks on party stalwarts in Masvingo, (Monday):
MASVINGO PROVINCE DESCENDS INTO WARZONE AS PRESIDENT CHAMISA COMMENCES PROVINCIAL TOUR
President Chamisa is currently embarking on a community citizens’ conversation interface in various provinces in line with our Agenda 2021. The tour commenced On Monday with engagements and interface meetings in Masvingo Province.
Following President Chamisa’s arrival in the province, the area has turned into a warzone. Yesterday, hundreds of ZANU PF thugs stoned cars, barricaded roads with burning logs & assaulted 5 members of our team who were badly injured, hospitalized and later discharged.
When approached by our members, drunken youths said that they had been sent by “Chadzamira”. Ezra Chadzamira of ZANU PF is currently the Provincial Minister of Masvingo. They held printed placards with ZANU PF slogans, hate speech against President Chamisa as well as “anti-sanctions” messages. Cars were seen ferrying the rented crowd and coordinating the attacks as violent thugs held up printed posters. The police watched and took no action even though they had earlier disrupted and shut down a private meeting of less than 20 people at the home of one of our provincial members. We condemn this selective application of the law.
This morning, Masvingo turned into a warzone with excessive, military-controlled roadblocks including in Chivi, Mwenezi and Urazvi manned by riot police and soldiers sprouting up on village access roads. Our members were subjected to illegal searches as riot police officers indicated that they were searching for “weapons”. Two trucks of riot police descended on Urazvi as President Chamisa arrived in the area.
The entrance to the homestead of one of our provincial members was blockaded by riot police. No explanation was given for the illegal and unusual police-controlled roadblock at the doorstep of a citizen. There have been threats of violence and killings against villagers throughout the province who have been warned not to attend meetings convened by the MDC Alliance. State agents are conducting unlawful surveillance and tracking of our members.
This political violence is unconstitutional (it violates our political rights enshrined in section 67) and cause for extreme concern. It is a clear act of desperation by a bankrupt, illegitimate regime that has failed to govern and now resorts to force and coercion against citizens.
We condemn the continued shrinking of the democratic space and the treatment of the MDC Alliance as a banned organization by the State.
What is beyond doubt is that ZANU PF is terrified of the unstoppable groundswell of citizen support for President Chamisa & the broad alliance forming in every village and every town to win Zimbabwe for change.
Despite the harassment and intimidation, President Chamisa and the MDC Alliance are continuing with the tour which will see the President engage citizens, civic leaders & special interest groups as we strengthen the broad alliance to win Zimbabwe for change. What is central for us is to champion the cause of the Zimbabwean people who face grave economic difficulties, depleted wages, a rising cost of living, a broken education system, dilapidated infrastructure, extreme poverty and a public health system that is on its knees.
Fadzayi Mahere National Spokesperson
Change That Delivers