Thursday, 21 April 2016


Joice Mujuru’s Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) has backed mass demonstrations to ratchet up pressure on President Robert Mugabe to fix the economy and end his alleged misrule.

This comes after thousands of people heeded calls for a mass demonstration last week against poverty and corruption in Zimbabwe by the opposition MDC, led by former Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, with people taking to the streets chanting songs denouncing Mugabe and his governing Zanu PF party.

In an interview with the Daily News yesterday, ZPF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo said Zimbabwe has reached a critical stage for people to demand their freedom.
“I am not one of the people who believe in writing manifestoes and talking, Zimbabweans need to act and stop talking,” Gumbo said.

“What I mean is peaceful demonstrations. Mugabe, like any other leader, is sensitive so do not estimate the role of demonstrations.”

Since Mugabe’s party controversially won the 2013 elections, the economy had slowed down, with thousands of jobs lost and social service delivery hitting an all-time low.

In recent months, experts have said Zimbabwe has once again hit the depths of humanitarian and economic despair that were last experienced in 2008, when the country’s seemingly unending political crisis precipitated an economic meltdown of monumental proportions — which culminated in the death of the Zimbabwe dollar and mass emigrations out of the country.

Gumbo said their party is concentrating on how to proffer solutions to the country’s economic woes.
He said ZPF believed that people have the fundamental right to express their frustrations against the government through demonstrations.

“There is nothing wrong in demonstrating because we are a democratic society,” he said.
“We had said this, that we want to create a democratic and peaceful nation where people can live without fear and able to decide their own future. We need to correct this anomaly.”

These sentiments come after the MDC held a successful demonstration last week, were the former prime minister said they will have more protests against a number of issues, including Zanu PF’s failure to fulfil its promise to create 2,2 million new jobs as espoused in the ruling party’s 2013 election manifesto, as well as demand answers following Mugabe’s recent claim that $15 billion had been stolen from the Chiadzwa diamond mining fields.

“We are saying to Mugabe as a statement, this is time for him to listen to the voice of the people, the people shall rule, the people shall liberate themselves,” Tsvangirai said after the demonstration.
“This is the first demonstration, but we are going to other provinces and we are also going to have a national demonstration here in Harare.”

Last week, MDC spokesperson Obert Gutu also said people are now fed up as Mugabe is failing to offer solutions to the current economic problems.
“For how long can bankrupt regimes last? This is the end game. They have destroyed the economy through decades of misrule, mismanagement and thievery.

“Now, there’s very little left to steal. The chickens are coming home to roost. The writing is on the wall,” said the former Chisipite senator.

Analysts, have said contrary to the government’s heavy propaganda, the Zimbabwe economy is “definitely dying”, as manifested by worsening liquidity challenges, company closures and job losses.
What makes the country’s situation worse is that in the urban areas, most of the unemployed and educated youths are selling an assortment of products, including cell phone recharge cards, vegetables, clothes, traditional herbs and skin lightening creams.

And instead of attending to the country’s worsening political and social-economic crises, Zanu PF bigwigs are embroiled in their party’s mindless bloodletting, in which a faction loyal to embattled Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa is engaged in deadly factional and succession wars with a group opposed to him succeeding Mugabe. daily news


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