President Robert Mugabe yesterday said he
was fast running out of patience with MDC-T
leader, Morgan Tsvangirai and other
opposition parties and pressure groups
protesting against his government,
threatening to deal with them
decisively.Addressing his party’s central
committee, Mugabe said Tsvangirai and his
supporters were playing a “very dangerous
game” and his government would not fold its
arms while violence scaled up across the
country in the name of electoral reform
protests.
Mugabe said MDC-T and the other opposition
parties under the National Electoral Reform
Agenda (Nera) should be sternly cautioned of
grave consequences, warning them they will
not win the war.
“Let the opposition parties and all those
angling for chaos and mayhem, and violent
demonstrations be warned that our patience
has run out,” he boomed.
“Government will take very strong measures
against any political party, organisation or
individuals that perpetuate violent
demonstrations.
“Anybody breaking the law will be punished
accordingly. The MDC and its supporters are
playing a very dangerous game.
“We also understand that they are planning
to terrorise the rural areas in the mistaken
belief that they can intimidate and harass
our supporters, let them be warned they
cannot win the war.”
Mugabe said protesters should not “cry when
we go for them”.
“We don’t want those who will cry, saying
there is no more democracy when we go for
them. Democracy does not mean destroying
people’s property, beating people and
looting. We are there to defend true
democracy, which is peace and non-violence,”
he said.
“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 will be thrown to them and ordered to
eat facing their own waste.”
The country has been rocked by
demonstrations in the past few months, with
pressure groups such as Tajamuka/Sesijikile
and #ThisFlag mobilising through social media
to successfully stage a complete shutdown of
the country.
Nera also joined in the act, but their protest
was violently crushed by the police.
But Mugabe yesterday attacked Nera,
accusing opposition political parties of trying
to make the country ungovernable in order to
invite foreign intervention.
He said the opposition was afraid of losing
the 2018 polls, which he said would be held
under the same conditions Nera was fighting
against.
Mugabe further accused Nera of inviting
Western countries to reinforce sanctions
against the country and using protests to
derail his efforts to resuscitate the economy.
“The demonstrations we have witnessed in
the last few weeks were not by accident of
history, but were purposefully choreographed
and launched in the mistaken belief that time
was ripe for a popular uprising against
government and Zanu PF,” he said.
“Zanu PF remains alive to, and does not need
to be reminded about the continuing everyday
economic challenges facing all our people
today. What is happening around us with
these concocted demonstrations is
distracting us from progressing on with our
concerted efforts aimed at improving the
performance of our national economy and the
welfare of the people.”
Mugabe also warned opposition parties
against using social media to force regime
change, saying political support should not be
by force.
Mugabe lashed out at the Zimbabwe Human
Rights Commission for “peddling falsehoods”
that Zanu PF was embarking on partisan
distribution of food.
“We are committed that all the people in
drought-stricken areas receive food,” he
said.
“The information, which some stupid people
and stupid spokesperson of Zimbabwe Human
Rights Commission; that food is being
distributed in a partisan manner is actually
false.”
“They just want to make headlines
internationally. They don’t have shame. It is
because of the little money they are getting
as non-governmental organisations.”