Manyara Irene Muyenziwa, the President of the Freedom of Rights Under Sovereign (FORUS) Party has categorically condemned the culture of violence pitting perennial political protagonists, the MDC Alliance led by Nelson Chamisa and ZANU (PF).
The rebuke by Muyenziwa follows skirmishes in Charumbira, Masvingo Province yesterday, among placard-carrying and rowdy angry youths and MDC Alliance supporters. Among the instigators of the violence were some villagers, some reportedly clad in ZANU (PF) regalia, who barricaded, stoned Nelson Chamisa’s convoy, and chased him and his crew out of the area where he had gone to address an impromptu meeting with some members of his party.
In an interview with Studio 7, Gift Ostallos Siziba, the MDC Alliance Deputy Spokesperson said the planned meeting was aborted following the violence from the youths allegedly hired by ZANU (PF) to prevent his party from campaigning because the ruling party was afraid of losing the 2023 elections to the main opposition party.
The rowdy youths pelted stones at the MDC Alliance convoy and shouted unprintable words towards Chamisa and other members of his party who accompanied him. Scores of MDC Alliance supporters were injured in the melee and most of the victims were hospitalised. Tafadzwa Mugwadi, the ZANU (PF) Director of Information denied his party’s involvement in the skirmishes and instead blamed the opposition for trying to tarnish his party’s image ahead of COP26 in Glasgow and the visit to the country by a top UN official expected in the country next week to assess the impact of Western-imposed sanctions on the economy.
“Violence in all its forms is deplorable. ZANU (PF) and the MDC Alliance have been in politics for a long time and their leadership and supporters should realise that violence is not a solution to Zimbabwe’s myriad of challenges. The country needs a united approach to tackle its challenges. As FORUS Party, we are doing everything in our power to show these parties the way of doing smart politics.
“We call upon these parties to take a leaf from FORUS Party. We are saying let’s compete at the level of ideas and practical economic solutions to extricate the country from its challenges. Genuine dialogue is one such avenue. Political competition should not be won by violence but through offering the electorate viable alternatives for economic growth, peace, and unity,” Muyenziwa said.