Despite suffering savage beatings, ongoing harassment by authorities and being locked up for fighting for change in the country over the past few weeks, protesting democracy activists say they are ready to die for the cause and will not rest until President Robert Mugabe’s ruling Zanu PF either shapes up or ships out.
Speaking in an interview with the Daily News yesterday, mobilisation committee member for pressure group Tajamuka/Sesijikile, Happymore Chidziva, said even though the government was ratcheting up its “persecution” of dissenting voices, they had vowed “to die on our feet” until Zanu PF heard the cries of long-suffering Zimbabweans.
“We are very committed to the struggle and even prepared to die. We are not intimidated by these arrests and we know these arrests are meant to instil fear in us. But no amount of thuggery or fear will deter us,” he said.
Chidziva’s came after police arrested and put in the slammer Tajamuka/Sesijikile spokesperson, Promise Mkwananzi, on Friday — on allegations of causing public violence on June 16 this year.
Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo has also warned Zimbabweans that the government will deal ruthlessly with all acts of resistance and mass action in the country.
In addition, panicking authorities have also since indicated that they are even prepared to set the military on the people, as well as hunt and clamp down on activists operating on social media, who are agitating for change.
During last week’s riots in Harare and the subsequent stunningly successful nationwide stay-away, hundreds of activists were either arrested, mauled by police dogs or left for dead by government agents, as the clamour for a better Zimbabwe reached a crescendo.
“Our collective resolve and determination has shaken the rogue regime, leaving it in a state of shock and panic.
“The brutal response by the regime to our cause on the #Shutdown is a depiction of the level of fear within the once mighty Zanu PF. The regime has never been so afraid and overwhelmed by fear like what we witnessed last week,” Chidziva said.
The MDC youth leader added that all “patriotic Zimbabweans should remain resolute as the Zanu PF regime is now on a knife edge and teetering on the brink of collapse”.
“To all arrested patriots, it is only such collective resolve and determination that will bring the Zimbabwe which we have yearned for for years. This is the only remedy available to us for the regime to respect and listen to the calls by citizens.
“Instead of trying to silence the masses through brutality and arrests, the regime should be establishing mechanisms to confront the difficulties and poverty facing our people.
“I want to express solidarity with Zimbabweans across the country who have fallen victim to the cowardly and arbitrary State arrests. This is the highest form of State persecution and has to be condemned at all levels.
“Among many patriots who have fallen victim to state persecution, I am very disturbed by the arrest of Mkwanazi and the denial of his justice in the courts at the weekend,” Chidziva said. daily news