Thursday 21 September 2023


A GROUP of disgruntled Zimbabweans in South Africa has reached out to opposition party Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and its leader Julius Malema asking for support for the protests slated for October 7.

The protesters are plotting to shut down the Beitbridge Border Post, a development meant to force a fresh election supervised by the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) following the disputed August 23-24 polls which saw President Emmerson Mnangagwa being declared the winner.

According to a petition dated September 18 directed to EFF, one of the organisers, Talent Rusere, invited Malema and other South African citizens to join them in the protests.

“This is an invitation to EFF president Malema and all fellow South African brothers and sisters. We are very much concerned about how illegal Zimbabwean immigrants are contributing to the deterioration of the SA economy leading to an increase in the unemployment rate. We are also concerned about the undeniable involvement of illegal Zimbabwean immigrants in criminal activities in your country.

“It’s in this regard that we need your help in assuming the responsibility to stop illegal Zimbabwean immigration. Zimbabweans are not happy being in SA where they are taken for cheap labour. They have a beautiful country with more than 68 minerals being looted to SA and other countries by Zanu PF each and everyday,” the petition partly read.

It noted that Zimbabweans were suffering under a military dictatorship, which subjects them to torture, abduction, rape and murder.

“The economy has been centralised only to benefit the Zanu PF elite. No opposition supporter or activist has access to the national economy. We have become foreigners in our own country and the laws have been skewed to dignify the perpetuation of our suffering. We have lost identity and pride as human beings, but President Cyril Ramaphosa and the African National Congress are standing solid with our oppressors perpetuating and buttering our misery as a people.”

Several civic groups have been formed since the announcement of election results in favour of Mnangagwa.

Some of the groups are galvanising the estimated three million Zimbabweans living in SA, most of them without legal documents, to rise up against Zimbabwe poll results.

Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec) declared Zanu PF’s Mnangagwa victorious with 52,6% of the vote, while CCC leader Nelson Chamisa had 44% of the vote.

The African Union (AU) and Sadc election observer missions, among others, reported that the elections were marred by irregularities.

Meanwhile, Zambians on Monday demanded that their government lobbies for an inquiry into the death of their former President Levy Mwanawasa following social media rants by Zanu PF secretary for finance Patrick Chinamasa about his death.

According to Zambian Provincial Minister for the Copperbelt, Elisha Matamba, Chinamasa admitted to having a hand in the death of Mwanawasa in 2008. They further accused him of threatening to kill Zambia’s incumbent President Hakainde Hichilema.

Chinamasa has since refuted the claims by Matamba and indicated that he had no plans to end Hichilema’s life in whatever manner.

In a statement made on behalf of some concerned Zambian citizens, which was addressed to members of diplomatic corps, the Press and the general public at Mulungushi Conference Centre in Zambia, former State House chief policy analyst under Mwanawasa, Jack Kalala, said Chinamasa’s rants were shocking.

“In view of the unsolicited confession that Mr Chinamasa made, it is our prayer that the Zambian government should demand for an inquiry to be made in the death of President Mwanawasa to establish the truth.

“This is in the interest of all the African heads of State as we wouldn’t like a situation where African presidents should be living in fear of each other but should work together to collectively resolve the many challenges our continent is facing,” he said.

Mwanawasa died on August 19, 2008 in France after suddenly falling sick under unclear circumstances while attending the AU summit in Shann El Sheik Tourist Resort City in Egypt.

“As if that was not enough, Mr Chinamasa severely warned President Hakainde Hichilema that he too could die in the same way,” Kalala added.

Hichilema, who is the Sadc Troika on Politics, Defence and Security  chairperson, and Sadc election ovserver mission head Nevers Mumba, have been at the receiving end of Zanu PF’s wrath over a post-election assessment report which certified that Zimbabwe’s polls had failed the free, fair and credibility test.

Zimbabwe-Zambia relations have been frosty following the disputed August 23-24 harmonised elections. Newsday


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