MDC-T statement on Chitungwiza violence
November 7, 2011 3:03 pm
Today, the MDC was once again forced to cancel its rally at Chibuku Stadium
in Chitungwiza after unruly Zanu PF militia led by the notorious Chipangano
attacked the organisers of the rally. For the record, police had been
advised of this rally and they had cleared it yet there was absolutely no
protection from the police when our members were attacked.
Part of the Chipangano gang led by Jimmy Kunaka demonstrate at the Heroes
Acre alongside other ZANU PF youth during the burial of the late army
general Solomon Mujuru.
The Zanu PF youths attacked the MDC staff organising the rally and members
of the public with iron bars, machetes, stones and other crude
weapons.Thirty MDC supporters who were going to the rally were attacked and
suffered tissue and various other injuries. Seven activists have been
hospitalised in Harare, while about 15 others were referred to a Chitungwiza
hospital for treatment.
Five MDC vehicles and the party’s public address system worth US$7 000 were
destroyed with key components of the PA system such as the mixer and
microphones were stolen. Money meant for paying essential services for the
event was looted resulting in the cancellation of the rally. The rowdy thugs
stole the national and the Party flags and five banners.
The MDC is deeply concerned by these activities, which are clearly designed
to close all the democratic spaces in Zimbabwe and prevent the MDC from
carrying out its lawful activities.There is a clear history of Zanu PF’s
recent disruptions of various MDC public meetings across the country.
Thug in Chief: Jimmy Kunaka reportedly leads the notorious ZANU PF
On 17 October, Zanu PF supporters disrupted the Parliamentary hearings on
the Electoral Amendment Bill in Marondera. Similar disruptions took place
in Mutasa on 18 October, on 19 October in Masvingo, 20 October in Midlands
and 21 October in Bulawayo.
The perpetrators were identified but not arrested. On 23 October, police
denied President Tsvangirai from holding a rally in Nkayi, Matebeleland
North. Similar disruptions took place in Lupane on 28 October, Lupane
despite the MDC being granted a peace order, in Binga on 29 October and 30
October in Victoria Falls.
There have been further disruptions of the Prime Minister’s government work
programmes especially in Matebeleland North. We are concerned once more that
these attacks are clearly meant to prevent our President and the Prime
Minister of Zimbabwe, Morgan Tsvangirai from addressing the people of
Zimbabwe on key issues affecting the country.
Zimbabwe is in chaos. Zanu PF is harvesting from its harvest of fears it
planted in 2008 and the MDC is seriously concerned by the use of violence as
Zimbabwe cannot have a free and fair election.
It is clear that Zanu PF and its junta are terribly frightened of free and
fair elections and are engaging in these activities as a way to delay the
elections. Zanu PF is showing all signs of desperation. Its actions are
the acts of a regime that is in the late summer of its life.
What has happened over the past two weeks, bring to the fore the need to
address all the outstanding issues on the roadmap to a free and fair
election.These include the total eradication of all state sponsored
violence; the return to the rule of law; security sector reforms and
realignment; democratisation and opening up of the media space.
Once again, the MDC remains committed to non-violence and will not engage in
any form of violence in its struggle for a better Zimbabwe. We remain
committed to non-violent democratic ways of achieving change. Nothing will
swerve us from this path. The MDC is ready for elections anytime once all
the guarantees for a free and fair election are put in place.
The people’s struggle for real change: Let’s finish it!!
MDC Information & Publicity Department
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