Resurgence of political violence worrying

HARARE - The resurgence of inter and intra-party violence in Zimbabwe amid a deteriorating political situation, is a real cause for concern.

First, it was MDC supporters who were bludgeoned by Zanu PF supporters for exercising their constitutional rights of free expression and peaceful assembly.

And just on Saturday, Zanu PF supporters turned on each other as two officials were axed to death in bloody intra-party ructions.

The bloodletting violence of the past week is indicative of a nation that stands on the edge as what had been long feared is beginning to unravel before us.

Zanu PF’s deadly factional and succession wars devouring the party could plunge the country into anarchy if they go unchecked.

For a long time, Mugabe and Zanu PF have used violence as a tool for coercion and settling differences.

This has become a culture in the politics of the country and there have not been any attempts to stop violence by President Robert Mugabe.

Attempts to punish perpetrators of violence have been rebuffed as in most cases police are accused of arresting victims, usually opposition supporters and civic society leaders.

The deaths of two Zanu PF supporters allegedly axed by their colleague — over factional differences — raise genuine fears of a season of bloody violence.

For a long time, opposition parties and political analysts have been warning that factionalism and Zanu PF’s unresolved succession matrix could cause political instability.

There are signs on the ground that the intra-party violence, which is located in the succession battles waged along factional lines, could persist as long as Mugabe fails to address who succeeds him.

It is ironic that the intra-party violence is increasing as Zanu PF heads towards its conference next month.

This violence has the tacit approval of party bigwigs who, during the day, appear like angels, but exhibit their devilish characters at night.

The ructions and fissures in Zanu PF signpost worse things to come for those who agree and disagree with this party.

If a party can devour its own children, who can bet against it not consuming perceived “enemies”?

What is clear, however, is that for a long time Mugabe and Zanu PF have used violence as a tool for coercion but it appears this monster could end up consuming its handlers.

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