'Mugabe must go now'

HARARE - As President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF come under increasing fire from a restless populace that is fed up with the country’s deepening rot, pressure group Tajamuka/Sesjikile says it will ratchet up its mass action programmes to force the nonagenarian to leave office now, as he did not represent the future anymore.

The reaffirmation of Tajamuka/Sesjikile’s determination to play a leading role in forcing Mugabe from power, the only leader that Zimbabweans have known since the country’s independence from Britain in April 1980, comes at a time the government has for the second consecutive month failed to pay soldiers on time.

“We are not prepared to wait for 2018 because of the speed with which things are deteriorating and obviously the advanced age of ...Mugabe is a big factor in this,” Tajamuka/Sesjikile’s spokesperson, Promise Mkwananzi, told the Daily News at the weekend.

“We are not convinced that he still has the ability to supervise the rigorous affairs of the State, more so in this crisis situation that we are in now.

“Secondly, his defiance shows that he has already crossed the red line and reached a point of no return.

“It’s also very important for ... Mugabe to retire immediately so that the remaining time between now and 2018 is used to implement the crucial reforms that will not happen while he is still there ... his pride will not allow him to make the bold decisions that the country needs to unravel itself from this crisis,” he added.

Once touted as the bread basket of Africa, Zimbabwe under Mugabe’s watch has slid into a much-derided basket case to the extent of failing to feed its people and paying its civil service.

For the second month running, the country’s 550 000 civil servants, including soldiers and the police, do not know when they are going to be paid their July salaries, as State coffers continue to dip in the face of a dying economy.

While soldiers are usually paid on the 14th of every month, military personnel who were hoping to be paid early this month were left bitterly disappointed on Thursday and Friday when they checked with their banks for their money — and to make matters worse, they were also not told when they would receive their remuneration.

It is feared that the delays could fuel political tensions in the country which has recently been rocked by growing citizen unrest, demonstrations and violent riots.

Mkwananzi said the plight of civil servants and ordinary Zimbabweans would only improve with the exit of Mugabe from power, adding that the long-ruling leader had “failed to understand that the economy needs to be competitive”.

“Our economy needs to be globally connected and competitive for this country to survive and thrive. It is clear that ...Mugabe does not understand this imperative. It is also not the question of who comes in that matters, it is what is to be done to correct the wrong path that the country is currently going towards.

“What is important are the reforms that need to be instituted immediately and to ensure that the 2018 elections are held under transparent and fair conditions, and that the winner of that election is both legitimate and undisputed.

“We certainly would like to see a transitional authority by 2017 without ... Mugabe of course, made up of all forces and working towards the crucial reforms that I have highlighted.

“Who leads it is purely the prerogative of the people to determine, and this ideally should happen in 2018 under fair and transparent electoral conditions,” Mkwananzi said.

His comments also come as the government has come under increasing pressure over the past few weeks, with the majority of civil servants — including teachers and nurses — striking over delayed salaries and ever deteriorating economic conditions in the country.

For the first time since January 1998 when food riots left seven people dead, the country experienced violent riots a fortnight ago as a result of poor policies and rising poverty levels.

In early July, the border between South Africa and Zimbabwe was shut down after protests called to agitate against an imports ban on basic goods turned violent.

More riots were also to rock Harare a few days later as touts and drivers of commuter omnibuses protested increased police roadblocks on the roads.

As it is, the situation remains tense, as agitated pro-democracy groups and opposition political movements warn they will roll out more protests until Mugabe’s government fixes all the problems afflicting Zimbabweans.

Indeed, and despite suffering savage beatings, ongoing harassment by authorities and being locked up for fighting for change in the country over the past few weeks, protesting democracy activists have confirmed that they are ready to die for the cause and will not rest until Zanu PF either shapes up or ships out.

Speaking along the same lines in an interview with the Daily News last week, mobilisation committee member for Tajamuka/Sesjikile, Happymore Chidziva, said even though the government was ratcheting up its “persecution” of dissenting voices, they had vowed “to die on our feet” until Zanu PF heard the cries of long-suffering Zimbabweans. “We are very committed to the struggle and even prepared to die. We are not intimidated by these arrests and we know these arrests are meant to instil fear in us. But no amount of thuggery or fear will deter us,” he said.

Chidziva’s comments came after police had arrested and put Mkwananzi in the slammer — on allegations of causing public violence on June 16 this year, while panicking authorities had also indicated that they were even prepared to set the military on the people, as well as hunt and clamp down on activists operating on social media, who are agitating for change.

“Our collective resolve and determination has shaken the rogue regime, leaving it in a state of shock and panic.

“The brutal response by the regime to our cause on the #Shutdown is a depiction of the level of fear within the once mighty Zanu PF. The regime has never been so afraid and overwhelmed by fear like what we witnessed last week,” Chidziva said.

The MDC youth leader added that all “patriotic Zimbabweans should remain resolute as the Zanu PF regime is now on a knife-edge and teetering on the brink of collapse”.

“To all arrested patriots, it is only such collective resolve and determination that will bring the Zimbabwe which we have yearned for, for years.

“This is the only remedy available to us for the regime to respect and listen to the calls by citizens.

“Instead of trying to silence the masses through brutality and arrests, the regime should be establishing mechanisms to confront the difficulties and poverty facing our people.

“I want to express solidarity with Zimbabweans across the country who have fallen victim to the cowardly and arbitrary State arrests. This is the highest form of State persecution and has to be condemned at all levels.

“Among many patriots who have fallen victim to State persecution, I am very disturbed by the arrest of Mkwanazi and the denial of his justice in the courts at the weekend,” Chidziva said.

Comments (12)

Mugabe will go when we act. We need to boycott ZANU PF thugs businesses. We need to have effective stay aways. We need to all join the endgame progressive forces. Short of that, Mugabe is still getting all needs including 24hr high level protection so that he will continue to prepare to go into the grave together with Zimbabwe. We will be buried together with this 92 years old fool if we do not take charge of our own destiny.

Zvichapera - 18 July 2016

Zvichapera I totally agree with you. We should identify all outfits owned by Mugabe and his Zanu PF cronies and boycott their products and services starting with Gushungo Dairies seeing that milk has got a very short lifespan they will feel the impact now. Lets go guys. Tweeter it

Dakarai - 18 July 2016

its time now, its been long time for Mugabe he thinks he own the Zimbabweans people of Zimbabwe should fight for their rights

Petrus - 18 July 2016

Be strong in your resolve real freedom is at hand. We as South Africans support you.

willem nel - 18 July 2016

The end is nigh.. Mugabe and all his cronies shd go. Show no mercy . #TAJAMUKA

pakaipa - 18 July 2016

This is the time for all zimbabweans to unite and take actions against zanu pf. Mugabe and his cronies must go now, These people Zimbabweans have suffered alot.

mtimande - 18 July 2016

zvarwadza hama. nyika yedu haichaita.

taurai - 18 July 2016

He must die

Benito - 18 July 2016

Well fools never listen and Mugabe being one of them will attempt to stay put till donkeys grow horns. But the good thing is the giant has awaken from a deep slumber very soon they shall be no Mugabe in this country watch this space the writing is on the wall and Mugabe must start running away much faster .

Diibulaanyika - 19 July 2016

Stay always should not be just for a day or two ,but it must be done none stop until our demands are met.

Janana wa Bikaz - 19 July 2016

The zimbabweans in SA my must mobilise with their southafrican friends to go north and block the entry at the beit bridge border for two weeks

zwenyika - 19 July 2016

The zimbabweans in SA my must mobilise with their southafrican friends to go north and block the entry at the beit bridge border for two weeks

zwenyika - 19 July 2016

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