Festive atmosphere at Heroes fete

HARARE - Yesterday's Heroes Day commemorations were spiced up by messages of Zanu PF’s election victory, as the party took advantage of the platform to gloat over its landslide win that opponents have branded fraudulent.

From the main gate of the National Heroes Acre — a shrine for fallen freedom fighters and party loyalists — there were placards inscribed with messages of how the “West” did not have a say in Zimbabwe’s affairs.

The walls of the shrine were emblazoned with green banners and posters, announcing that elections were “credible.”

“Southern African Development Community (Sadc), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa), African Union (AU) came, saw and confirmed that all that matters in Zimbabwe,” read one of the banners on the way up the shrine.

Morgan Tsvangirai and Welshman Ncube’s MDC parties were conspicuously absent from the national celebrations after protesting Mugabe’s disputed election.

The 89-year-old political veteran used his address to hammer the labour-backed opposition parties as quislings of Western governments, particularly Britain and the US who were questioning the credibility of the July 31 election.

Former Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara did attend however, hobnobbing with Mugabe and other VIPs at the high table.

Poster after poster at the shrine was re-asserting Zimbabwe’s independence from colonial rule, casting aspersions on local and Western observers and giving a thumbs-up to African governments that have endorsed Mugabe’s re-election.

Some of the posters read: “We see better, observe better, judge better than all of you natives’ — Westerners”, “My vote is my input the rains are coming”, “It’s Africa versus Europe with Zimbabwe as the new battle front”, “Is Zimbabwe Election Support Network (Zesn) larger than Sadc, Comesa, and all third world?”, “Gladly rid of the three-legged monster”, “Has any African observed the European elections?”, “Now begins the empowerment revolution”, “Let’s tackle water and electricity challenges now that thieves are gone.”

Mugabe’s face was emblazoned on T-shirts of supporters who turned out for the celebrations.

There was song and dance, with a convivial atmosphere as Zanu PF supporters savoured their victory which has been described by the MDC as “Pyrrhic”.

Sadc and AU, in their preliminary reports, agreed that the elections were peaceful, noting that they had observed electoral irregularities but refused to rubber stamp the elections as credible.

However, Sadc, AU and Comesa are yet to present their final reports which will give a final verdict on whether the Zimbabwean elections were credible.

Mugabe thanked the observer missions “and friendly countries that wish us well” for supporting Zimbabwe’s national efforts.

Comments (2)

From now on, the acronym MDC must solely be the preserve of Daily News, I mean, typographically, as everyone else shoves mdc into political oblivion.

Mundamurefu - 13 August 2013

I thought it was meant to be a national event...when will they mature to not politicise national events?

Lt Gen - 13 August 2013

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