It is with great sadness that we announce that the church that was organizing the Itai Dzamara prayer meeting scheduled for tomorrow has told us that the event is no longer proceeding because of gross interference by the police for no apparent reason.
We are shocked that even the police could have the audacity to stand in the way of prayer, despite having been notified of the event by the church as required under the law.
As a party, we are naturally disappointed because the safety of citizens is a key issue that deserves national attention and the invocation of the name of the Almighty God. We are told that the event has been postponed to a new date but we continue to mobilize our members to attend this important national prayer meeting, whenever it will be held.
President Tsvangirai and the entire party were ready for this worthwhile national prayer meeting tomorrow and will continue to be ready to attend whenever it is going to take place.
The reaction of the police to foil an innocent prayer meeting vindicates our position that the State has a hand in the disappearance of this innocent man and has no shame in gross human rights abuses.
It is obvious that if you can foil a prayer meeting, you can do worse things!
MDC: Equal opportunities for all.
Obert Chaurura Gutu
The MDC has been vindicated by the very low turnout in the 16 by-elections where Zimbabweans heeded the party’s call to snub the sham polls until the implementation of far-reaching electoral reforms.
The by-elections have largely vindicated our position as even these polls were fraught with the massive irregularities we have highlighted such as vote-buying, abuse of traditional leaders and disenfranchisements as some voters found their names not on the voters roll.The low voter turnout and the paltry votes for the so-called winners tell their own sad story. This is a pyrrhic victory for the Zanu PF regime. It is, indeed, a hollow and meaningless ‘’victory.’’
The average vote of about 2 500 for the “winners” in a constituency with 40 000 registered voters confirm that this is a victory of the minority. The majority who stayed away actually won these by-elections while the losers who participated in paltry numbers will be announced the winners.
It is a landslide of the minority.
Even in Tsholotsho where two Vice Presidents competed to buy votes by dishing out money and rice, the 11 000 votes recorded, are still a far much cry from the over 40 000 registered voters in this sparsely populated constituency .
From Luveve in Bulawayo to Dzivarasekwa in Harare, the story is the same; Zimbabweans stayed away from these sham polls. Zimbabweans heeded the call by the MDC and President Morgan Tsvangirai not to participate in these polls until far-reaching reforms were implemented to ensure a credible outcome. No amount of political grandstanding by the faction - ridden and disintegrating Zanu PF regime can sanitise the electoral farce that took place on June 10, 2015.
The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission must take this as a warning that unless and until they run a credible poll, Zimbabweans will continue staying at home. Until and unless reforms are implemented, our elections will not be credible and will continue to breed contested outcomes. ZEC should up its game and ensure truly credible polls. The recent Afrobarometer survey conducted showed that more than half of the country’s population has no confidence in ZEC specifically for the reasons proffered by the MDC.
To SADC, the message coming from these polls is that the crisis of legitimacy is at the core of the country’s crisis. When you have the minority claiming victory against a background of such a shameful turnout and such paltry figures by the so-called winners, it confirms that something is very wrong in the country.
In short, the results of these by-elections are a disgrace. SADC and the rest of Africa cannot just watch when we are running charades disguised as elections.
We in the MDC remain steadfast on our position that we and the majority of the people of Zimbabwe will only participate in elections predicated on reforms so that we have a free, fair and credible outcome.
Press Statement by President Tsvangirai
In terms of Section 276 (1) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe, “a local authority has the right to govern, on its own initiative, the local affairs of the people within the area for which it has been established, and has all the powers necessary for it to do so.”
The utterances by Ignatious Chombo demanding that all local authorities should forcibly remove vendors from the streets are therefore unconstitutional. Local authorities are urged to reject any unconstitutional directives issued by the Zanu PF regime.
The MDC is extremely disturbed and concerned by the announcement that was made yesterday by Zanu PF’s Ignatious Chombo to use the Zimbabwe National Army to remove vendors from the streets of the cities, towns and growth points throughout Zimbabwe. The Zanu PF regime must not abuse the National Army to cover for its failures.
The Zanu PF regime’s modus operandi is reminiscent of previous operations like Murambatsvina that took place in May 2005 and the Gukurahundi genocide of the early to mid - 1980s. It is totally unfair for the corrupt and chaotic Zanu PF regime to unleash the whole might of the military on innocent citizens struggling to eke out a living in the face of a crumbling and collapsing economy that has been brought about by years of misrule and corruption by the same regime. The Zanu PF regime created the problem of joblessness by failing to properly and efficiently run the economy. The regime can, therefore, not seek to punish the vendors for a problem that the government created.
The regime must take full responsibility for the suffering that the people are going through after it failed to fulfil its election promises of creating 2 million jobs.
The issue of the people on the streets is symptomatic of the ZanuPF regime’s failure to run the country. No less than 55,000 workers have lost their jobs over the past three years after more than 610 companies closed shop countrywide. The trend is continuing with companies closing almost on a daily basis throwing millions of people onto the streets.
Against the background of a comatose economy and unfulfilled electoral promises, the Zanu PF regime must instead resign in shame rather than unleash the army on innocent citizens struggling to eke out a decent living.
The army must refuse to be used against their brothers, sisters and even their wives and husbands who are trying to salvage an honest living from vending under the prevailing difficult circumstances. The MDC would like to strongly warn the Zanu PF regime to exercise restraint and to be wary of a restive and hungry population.
The MDC will hold Robert Mugabe and his regime to account for any casualties that might be suffered in the ill - conceived brutal plan.
The MDC challenges the Zanu PF regime to come up with an alternative plan for the people’s survival rather than brutally curtailing their means of survival in this very difficult economic environment.
It is now very evident that the corrupt Zanu PF regime has totally failed to meet the essential needs of the majority of the people of Zimbabwe who are living in abject poverty and destitution.
In view of this, the MDC has developed a genuine and sustainable plan to create a developmental state which will move beyond rhetoric and begin calculating “genuine progress,” in a way that takes seriously ecological and social values.
In this plan, people’s livelihoods will be improved, starting with food security, decent jobs, affordable primary health care and education, access to clean water, sanitation and adequate shelter.
The social and economic rights are indivisible and the MDC advocated for them to be enshrined in the recently completed new Constitution of Zimbabwe. According to the MDC plan, the greatest social and economic upliftment of citizens will be achieved through wealth creation associated with investment and the creation of gainful employment.
At the epicentre of the MDC’s upliftment model is the creation of an enabling environment for entrepreneurship to flourish and extend the right of citizens to own property and claim the protection of the State for their civil, socio -economic and property rights.
The MDC believes in adopting policies and programmes that will benefit all Zimbabweans regardless of race, colour or creed.
The MDC is a social democratic political party that abhors all forms of discrimination. In this regard, therefore, the MDC is appalled and extremely disturbed by the remarks made by both Emmerson Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko whilst addressing a rally in Tsholotsho North on Sunday, June 7, 2018. The two Zanu PF appointees told villagers that only constituencies that have Zanu PF legislators will benefit from government projects. This a shocking revelation that flies in the face of the founding provisions of the Constitution of Zimbabwe that clearly states that ‘’Zimbabwe is a unitary, democratic and sovereign republic.’’
The majority of Zimbabweans find themselves living in abject poverty and destitution simply because the crumbling and faction - ridden Zanu PF regime has, over the years, practised discriminatory policies that ensured that the wealth of the nation is only enjoyed by a few politically well -connected individuals. It is on record that the Zanu PF regime has deliberately made sure that the western provinces of both Matebeleland North and Matebeleland South remain under - developed as punishment for the persistent rejection of Zanu PF by the people of this region. What both Mnangagwa and Mphoko uttered at the weekend was simply confirmation of what the people of Matebeleland have always known.
The Zanu PF regime is a cruel and insensitive administration that is prepared to make people suffer for the simple reason that they have refused to vote for a crumbling and corrupt political formation. The people of Zimbabwe continue to suffer at the hands of a bankrupt and corrupt criminal cabal in Zanu PF that has made it their business to privatise the country’s resources and also to ensure that the majority of the people remain destitute and thus, reliant on government hand outs for their livelihood. Put simply, the crumbling Zanu PF regime thoroughly enjoys the suffering of the people of Zimbabwe.This is a renegade and pariah regime that has perfected the art of thievery and misgovernance.
It is clear that the political and socio - economic crisis currently ravaging Zimbabwe can never be sustainably solved as long as Robert Mugabe and his corrupt gang of thieves and plunderers remain firmly ensconced at Munhumutapa Building. Zimbabwe urgently needs a government that is not only caring and accountable but that is legitimate and respects the Constitution of the country. Mnangagwa and Mphoko are simply an extension of their political boss and master; Robert Mugabe. These two men are bent on spreading alarm and despondency within the country in general and also in Tsholotsho North in particular. As agents of a collapsing and deeply unpopular regime, Mnangagwa and Mphoko are determined to instil fear in the hearts of the people of Tsholotsho North. The MDC calls upon the people of Zimbabwe to join us in the peaceful and democratic struggle that will ensure that the criminal cabal presently running Zimbabwe does not last a day longer.
The MDC also calls upon member countries of SADC as well as the AU to appreciate the Zanu PF regime for what it really is ie a renegade, corrupt and illegitimate administration that thrives on the physical, emotional and psychological torture of peace - loving citizens of Zimbabwe. For how shall the downtrodden continue to suffer at the hands of this criminal and corrupt Zanu PF cabal? The MDC is vindicated in its call that no elections should be held in Zimbabwe without the carrying out of political, media and legislative reforms that will enable voters to freely and fairly choose a government of their choice.
MDC: Equal Opportunities for all
The MDC has made a principled resolution never to legitimise any electoral farce in Zimbabwe. This historic resolution has, amongst other factors, been informed and influenced by the recalcitrant, stubborn, corrupt and crumbling Zanu PF regime’s failure to put in place measures that guarantee the creation of a political environment condusive to the holding of free and fair elections.
The collapsing Zanu PF regime has clearly proved that it is beyond redemption. This is a bankrupt and violent regime that has continued to bury its head in the sand and pretend that the comatose economy will somehow, miraculously get out of the intensive care unit and start to grow without the adoption of the necessary political and socio - economic policies that are deliberately geared at stimulating political stability and fostering industrial growth.
More than 90% of Zimbabweans are living in abject poverty and destitution but the ailing and very old Robert Mugabe and his corrupt gang of die - hard kleptocrats remain unfazed. The criminal and corrupt cabal presently running the affairs of State in Zimbabwe is completely insensitive to the suffering of the majority of the people.
A self - confessed political thug who goes by the name Saviour Kasukuwere has embarked on a country - wide terrorist campaign trail; threatening villagers and other peace - loving Zimbabweans to vote for a thoroughly discredited, morbidly corrupt, faction - ridden and crumbling political party, Zanu PF.
Kasukuwere has been terrorising and traumatising innocent Zimbabweans into accepting and sanitising a deeply flawed electoral system that can never give rise to a legitimate result. Zanu PF is in panic mode as the crumbling regime realises that the majority of the people of Zimbabwe have been resoundingly convinced by the logic behind the hugely successful and popular ‘’Without Reforms, No Elections’’ campaign that has been spear-headed by President Morgan Tsvangirai.
The overly excitable commissar of the illegitimate, chaotic and corrupt Zanu PF cabal is clearly behaving like a village bully. He has been uttering nonsensical statements as he desperately seeks to shore up the political fortunes of his disintegrating Mafia organisation. He is a hopelessly misdirected political hoodlum who urgently needs to undertake some basic and elementary lessons in political decorum and common decency.
The MDC shall remain resolute and steadfast in its principled stance of “Without Reforms, No elections.” The party of excellence is not going to participate in a shambolic and flawed electoral contest whose outcome is pre - determined. Kasukuwere can hallucinate all he wants and can huff and puff all he wants but the bottom line is that the MDC will never legitimise an electoral fraud disguised as an election.
The MDC would like to make it abundantly clear to all Zimbabweans and to the world at large that the reforms we are demanding are the only solution to solving the long standing political logjam and socio - economic decay in the country.
The MDC has taken a position that unless and until all the political, legal and electoral reforms are implemented, the whole electoral process will not lead to a legitimate outcome. It is disturbing that Zimbabwe is the only country in Southern Africa which has not fully adopted and implemented the SADC Protocol and Guidelines for the holding of free and fair elections.
The MDC demands that the following be urgently dealt with to enable the holding of free, fair, peaceful and credible elections in Zimbabwe. The issues include, but are not limited to, the following :
MDC: EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR ALL