Zvimba district becomes ‘no go’ area for MDC-T
By Tichaona Sibanda
23 July 2012
Stung by significant inroads made by the MDC-T in Zvimba, gangs of ZANU PF
youths are turning Robert Mugabe’s home district into a no-go zone.
For two weeks in a row elements in ZANU PF, aided by state security agents
and soldiers, have blocked the MDC-T from holding rallies in Darwendale and
Zvimba. On both occasions Tendai Biti, the Secretary-General of the party,
was scheduled to address the rallies.
While the rally in Darwendale last week was disrupted by soldiers, Sunday’s
planned gathering was cancelled at the behest of Local Government Minister
Ignatius Chombo, according to the Zvimba Rural District Council acting chief
executive officer Prince Mhembere. Chombo is the ZANU PF MP for the
neighboring Zvimba North constituency.
Paradzai Herbert Munangatire, the MDC-T information and publicity secretary
for Zvimba West told SW Radio Africa that they had secured police clearance
to hold their rally at Murombedzi growth point.
‘When we were in the middle of setting up the venue, we sensed trouble was
brewing when hordes of people just invaded the pitch and started verbally
abusing us and blocking our supporters from coming in. Some youths started
playing football and the area just became very tense.
‘At some point we were pelted with stones and quite a number of our
supporters were injured, and the violence continued into the night when one
of our senior district officials was stabbed and left for dead,’ Munangatire
Munangatire added that Sunday was a sad day for politics and democracy in
Zimbabwe, especially as the disturbances took place on Mugabe’s doorstep.
‘Everybody knows who is responsible for the violence and grievous attacks on
our members and no one will dare investigate what happened because this is
Mugabe’s home area.
‘I think the resurgence of political violence is an attack on the country’s
fledgling democracy and the right of the people to civil liberty and freedom
of association,’ Munangatire said.
MDC-T rally turns violent in Mugabe's rural home
Political violence breaks out in Mugabe’s rural home area Eight MDC-T
members were on Sunday injured, two vehicles destroyed and
by Staff Reporter
two party officials arrested by the police at a political rally in Zvimba,
President Robert Mugabe’s home area.
According to an MDC-T statement, the political violence broke out on Sunday
morning at Murombedzi business centre, some 15km from Mugabe’s rural
homestead as party supporters waited for Tendai Biti, the Secretary General,
to address them Zanu (PF) supporters are being blamed for the violence.
The MDC-T Mashonaland West Provincial Vice Youth Chairperson, Maltin
Mukusha, who was also attacked, said the Zanu (PF) activists provoked them.
"When we got there in the morning, we found the Zanu PF youths already
playing soccer in the council ground. We informed the police about this and
they said we could still go ahead with our rally as scheduled, but they
(Zanu PF) brought netball courts and made a makeshift ground close to where
‘But we remained calm and continued to sing our songs. Out of nowhere, the
rowdy youth began to throw sand in the air and stones began to rain on us.
Our provincial vehicle was damaged and the district chairperson's vehicle
was not spared," said Mukusha.
Tawanda Bvumo, the Provincial Treasurer, said the rally was cancelled
following police failure to intervene to quell the disturbances as Zanu (PF)
supporters invaded the rally venue.
"We had initially booked the council grounds but the council refused us
access, then we opted for the open space at the growth point.
Apparently, Zanu (PF) youth today claimed to have booked the ground for a
sports tournament. The police then advised us to cancel our own meeting
after Zanu (PF) thugs attacked us," said Bvumo, according to the statement.
Wilson Makanyaire, the Provincial Organising Secretay and another MDC-T
member identified as Sekuru Kwenda were arrested and taken to the nearby
Murombedzi Police Station.
‘‘Reports from Zvimba say they are surrounded by Central Intelligence
Officers who are questioning them (over) why they are holding a rally in
Zvimba,’’ said MDC-T.
Last week, two other MDC rallies were cancelled after a Zanu PF attack, read
the statement, adding that Biti and other party members were attacked after
soldiers from a nearby barrack claimed they had a soccer match at Darwendale
‘‘In Mashonaland East, another rally in Mutoko East took place amid
intimidation by some misguided soldiers who went around the village
discouraging the people from attending. However, this did not work as
hundreds of villagers turned up for the MDC rally,’’ said the statement.
MDC condemns Zanu PF’s disruption of rallies
Monday, 23 July 2012
The MDC condemns in the strongest terms the continued barbaric and wanton
disruption of its rallies which resulted in 11 MDC members seeking medical
attention after they were assaulted by rowdy Zanu PF members at a sanctioned
rally at Murombedzi growth point in Zvimba West, Mashonaland West province
Hon Tendai Biti, the MDC Secretary General was expected to address hundreds
of Party members who had gathered for the event.
The violence resulted in 11 members seeking urgent treatment in Chinhoyi
while several Party vehicles were damaged.
The MDC is concerned that known security agents led by one major Mutimusakwa
of the Zimbabwe National Army and Emmanuel Tandi, a Central Intelligence
Operative were leading Zanu PF thugs during the disturbances.
Maggie Hoshiki, a Zanu PF councillor in the area was part of the group of
When the Mashonaland West Provincial Leadership approached the police
seeking assistance, the police officers where unco-operative saying they had
instructions from the Zvimba Rural District Council to bar the MDC rally.
To us, this is an indication that some people are being allowed to act above
the law and can override a lawful decision made by the police.
These violent and unruly disruptions are an unacceptable trend that must be
stopped immediately. We are concerned that these disturbances took place
after soldiers from inkomo Barracks disrupted another MDC rally in
Darwendale where Hon Biti was expected to address last weekend.
Yesterday’s disturbances in Zvimba West are an indication that Zanu PF is
running scared ahead of the next by-elections and national elections, which
the MDC will resoundingly win.
The people’s struggle for real change – Let’s finish it!!!
ZANU PF AFRAID OF LOSING ZVIMBA AND THE REST MASH WEST BECOMES VIOLENT
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