Friday, 24 June 2016


Following the huge turnout at her maiden rally in Bulawayo last week, former Vice President and now Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) leader, Joice Mujuru, says that gathering shamed her detractors — chiefly President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF — who have described her as a political nonentity.

In a statement that was released through her spokesperson Gift Nyandoro, Mujuru said the size of the Bulawayo rally “brought shame to the doorsteps of political prophets of doom. Without doubt, you confirmed that Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) party is the solution and is the way to go,” she said.

Mugabe and other Zanu PF bigwigs have repeatedly sought to portray ZPF as doomed to fail, and that it was inevitable and a matter of time before the new kid on the political block split into several splinter groups.

However, Nyandoro’s statement said ZPF was around for the long haul, and that as opposed to Zanu PF’s tactics of coercion, the party did not use violence to force people to attend its rallies.

“We salute our supporters and Bulawayo residents for attending our maiden rally freely and voluntarily. No force and coercion was used to force-march people to the people’s rally. No market stalls and shops were closed to ensure that everyone attended the rally against their will.

“No people were bussed to the venue … all came freely and voluntarily and more importantly … did so in thunderous thousands. ZPF party does not have dubious vigilante groups like the infamous Chipangano which instil fear and threats in people so that they attend rallies,” he said.

Nyandoro added that the people of Bulawayo had shown the world that the fear of political threats could be defeated.

“We note as ZPF that Zimbabweans live in fear … people have fear to stand up for their political beliefs freely and voluntarily without witnessing persecution like the mysterious disappearance of a democratic activist Itai Dzamara, the torching of homes of opposition supporters and threats of use of violence and force to crush dissenting voices.

“Against all odds, ZPF supporters and Bulawayo residents, you defied fear by your attendance of our maiden rally in your thousands,” he said.

And as the party braced itself for another star rally in Harare tomorrow, also to be addressed by Mujuru — who is now referred to as “Mother Zimbabwe” — ZPF said Zimbabweans had shown that they no longer had time for the politics of political patronage and bootlicking.

“As ZPF, we insist that land is a national asset that should be distributed equally to all Zimbabweans regardless of race, tribe, gender and one’s political affiliation.

“Clearly, a political party in government should make a clear distinction between a political party and a people’s government,” Nyandoro said.

Commenting on the possible formation of an opposition coalition against Zanu PF ahead of the 2018 general elections, the party reiterated that it believed in inclusivity and would not hesitate to “join hands with like-minded democratic forces”. daily news


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