Mugabe dared to kill protesters
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Mugabe dared to kill protesters

All major opposition political parties
yesterday vowed to defy President Robert
Mugabe’s threats against demonstrations,
saying they are prepared to die on the
streets for their freedom.
BY BLESSED MHLANGA
Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC-T party, Joice
Mujuru’s People First, the Welshman Ncube-
led MDC, People’s Democratic Party led by
Tendai Biti and other members of the
National Electoral Reform Agenda (Nera)
representing all of Zimbabwe’s opposition
parties said yesterday that following
Mugabe’s deadly threats against opposition
leaders, they had met and resolved to resume
the demonstrations on an even higher note.
Addressing the Zanu PF central committee
meeting on Friday, Mugabe warned the
opposition, in particular MDC-T leader,
Tsvangirai that he would unleash his full
wrath on them if they continued with street
protests against his rule. He said his
patience was running out and that no one
should blame him for whatever would befall
the opposition leaders.
MDC-T secretary-general Douglas Mwonzora,
however, said in view of Mugabe’s threats
and police brutality, opposition parties had
met on Friday and agreed to turn up the
heat on the 92-year-old Zanu PF leader.
“We will up our game against Mugabe. We are
not afraid of him or his police. He must know
that we are not about to negotiate with him
for our constitutional rights and as Nera, we
have resolved to continue with
demonstrations,” he said.
Mwonzora accused Mugabe of being delusional
and forgetting that he was the one who
signed the 2013 constitution into law, that
he now wanted to violate.
The MDC-T said it would stand in defiance
and let the police decide whether or not to
harm demonstrators in the wake of
statements by Mugabe, which seemed to give
the police a free reign.
“It’s the choice of the police whether or not
they should shed blood of innocent
protestors. That there are murderers in the
system will not stop us from sending a
message and taking action which will benefit
the future of Zimbabwe,” said Mwonzora.
Tsvangirai’s spokesperson, Luke
Tamborinyoka said Mugabe was caught up in
an “embarrassing time warp,” as he was
failing to understand that demonstrations
were permissible in the new constitution.
“He is living out of his time; an analogue
politician in a digital age, a Remington
typewriter in an internet cafe. President
Tsvangirai is not moved at all by these
threats from an old man shocked to the core
by the resurgence of people power,”
Tamborinyoka said.
He accused Mugabe of always blaming
Tsvangirai for whatever problem he faced
including family issues.
“He is haunted by the ghost of the man who
has taught him electoral defeat to the extent
that even where the people speak he sees not
them but the ghost of his political master,
the only man who makes him quiver like reeds
in a howling storm,” Tamborinyoka said.
Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) said following
years of experience working with Mugabe,
their leader and former Vice President, Joice
Mujuru, was well aware that the Zanu PF
leader was not a person to negotiate with.
“The people who have been in Zanu PF and
are now with ZimPF know from experience
that you cannot negotiate with Mugabe. The
only language he understands is the
demonstrations, so we are not going to
attempt to negotiate with him,” ZimPF
spokesperson Jealousy Mawarire said.
According to ZimPF, Zimbabweans had no
choice but to take Mugabe’s government head
on vowing protestors will not back down even
in the face of violent threats.
“We are not going to stop demonstrations
because we have no choice but to
demonstrate. Its either we die of hunger or
we die on the streets demonstrating. We are
in-between a hard place and a rock,”
Mawarire said.
“We have always had peaceful demonstrations
as guaranteed by section 59 of the
constitution, but it is the police who have
always been violent, even teargasing a
demonstration before it had started.”
Mugabe warned protestors would be sent to
prison if the demonstrations continued.
“And if they take actions that are painful,
they have only themselves to blame. Most of
them have never been in a prison cell, where
food is thrown to them and ordered to eat
facing their own waste,” Mugabe said.
But spokesperson of the Welshman Ncube led
MDC; Kurauone Chihwayi said Zimbabweans
would not allow Zanu PF to “get away with
murder and theft of resources meant for
national development.”
“Zimbabweans are swimming in Zanu PF
created poverty and surviving under very
tough economic conditions that may only
change after the 2018 united opposition
victory which is imminent,” Chihwayi said.
“The MDC subscribes to the idea of a united
opposition and great strides have been made
to ensure Zanu PF ouster in 2018.”
He said the country needed a new political
driver with a positive and capable mind to
take Zimbabwe forward.
“No amount of threats will stop the people
from expressing themselves or demand
Mugabe’s ouster as allowed by the national
constitution,” he said.
People’s Democratic Party spokesperson
Jacob Mafume said despite the “reckless”
statements by Mugabe, people would not rest
until they forced him to an “old people’s
home.”
“He thinks it’s propaganda that people are
suffering while his family eats the fat of the
land,” Mafume said.
“His cronies like named cabinet ministers eat
like there is no tomorrow. People are
determined and resolute to demonstrate until
he goes to an old people’s home to rest or do
what other old people are doing, not to
pretend to run a country when he can’t pay
salaries except his own.”