MDC Mbare rally gets green light
POLICE yesterday gave the Nelson Chamisa-led MDC the green light to proceed with its rally scheduled for Stoddart Hall in Mbare today under strict conditions, but the ruling Zanu PF youth league has vowed to “intervene”, claiming the “MDC Alliance are the enemies of peace and Chamisa is the chief terrorist”, the Daily News can report. The MDC rally, where Chamisa is expected to give his “Vision 2020” address, is expected to be tense in the restive suburb of Mbare where the ruling party has a fair share of supporters. Political analysts and think tanks have warned that the country may witness violent demonstrations because of the deteriorating economic situation and failure by the country’s political protagonists President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Chamisa to find each other. MDC deputy spokesper
son Luke Tamborinyoka confirmed the police had given them permission to have their rally. “Everyone is free to attend the event and the police have since officially notified the party that the bumper event can go ahead without State inhibition. Tomorrow, (today)… Chamisa will launch the party’s Agenda 2020 in which the MDC will spell out to Zimbabweans and the world the party’s programme of action for the year. Zimbabweans are wallowing under a debilitating political and economic crisis and are looking up to the MDC’s competent leadership for direction. “Tomorrow (today), the party will provide direction by enunciating the party’s programme of the year when … Chamisa spells out how the party intends to address the multi-layered legitimacy and socio-economic crisis that has arrested the nation. “Zimbabweans can barely survive; civil servants are suffering while villagers are facing imminent starvation with the clueless
and illegitimate Zanu PF government failing to provide solutions. “The MDC will publicly spell out the way forward for the nation and every Zimbabwean is free to attend the event,” said Tamborinyoka. However, the MDC can only proceed with its programme today if it ensures that its supporters do not toyi-toyi or disturb the peace in Mbare, something
that could lead to clashes with their Zanu PF counterparts who are itching for a fight. Zanu PF secretary for the youth league Pupurai Togarepi said his constituency will intervene if they feel that the opposition, which he branded “a terrorist organisation”, goes astray. “Leaders of the MDC Alliance are the enemies of peace and Chamisa is the chief terrorist, we will not
allow them to disturb the peace. If the police have given them permission to hold the rally then well and fine, but that should not be used as the pretext for launching anti-government protests, we are aware of their shenanigans and we will defend the peace if we feel that they are threatening our daily routines. “The good thing is that people of Zimbabwe know the shenanigans of this amorphous political entity and will resist any attempt to subvert the rule of law and our democracy. “We will defend the peace and tranquillity prevailing in our country. If we are provoked, the Constitution allows us to defend ourselves. We will not allow thuggery to disturb our people, never,” said Togarepi. Since January last year, MDC attempts to stage demonstrations in Harare and other parts of the country have been thwarted by the police through the use of brutal force, amid opposition complaints of selective application of the law where Zanu PF is allegedly given the freedom to carry
out their activities without hindrance. Some of the events that were violently quashed by law enforcement agents where Chamisa’s Hope of the Nation Address in November as well as a rallies that had been pencilled for Mabvuku in Harare, Chitungwiza and other urban centres throughout the country with the police citing the MDC’s failure to comply with some provisions of Maintenance of Peace and Oder Act (Mopa). Among other things, Mopa provides that parties must notify the police before holding public gatherings stating who the convener of the event would be. It places the responsibility of any eventualities such as the outbreak of violence and or destruction of property emanating from the gathering on the convener. Ironically, Zanu PF was allowed to hold its activities without hindrance including its anti-sanctions rally in October in Harare as well as a rally last November in Chiredzi.