Violence has no place in society

HARARE - The assault of Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) officials in Guruve recently is a sad reminder that political violence, especially that instigated by the ruling Zanu PF is still entrenched in our society.

ZPF officials, who included retired senior military officer and former Zimbabwe ambassador to Mozambique, Agrippa Mutambara were heavily assaulted by suspected Zanu PF youths who were armed with axes and machetes at Dunaverty Farm in Guruve — where three ZPF officials are running agricultural operations.

Mutambara, Obert Mutasa, Cyril Mureya and Temba Ncube were left for dead by their assailants but perhaps what is shocking is that police went on to arrest them, despite the fact that they were victims.

Following the March 2008 harmonised elections, political violence became almost the order of the day, particularly in the run-up to the presidential run-off that was announced after the polls had failed to produce a clear winner.

Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) president Morgan Tsvangirai, who had defeated President Robert Mugabe in the first round, withdrew from the run-off, complaining bitterly over the violence that he said had claimed the lives of over 200 of his supporters while thousands were displaced from their homes.

These are scenarios that have become all-too familiar in the country. The biggest casualty in all this was the credibility of the one-horse race that took place on June 27, 2008.

The murders, abductions and such other terrors could not have produced a result anywhere near the minimum basic that could represent both legitimacy and legality. 

The Guruve violence appeared well-choreographed for — as some sections of the media have claimed — Zanu PF youths were going about their business.

Reports, however, say they were armed with an assortment of weapons, including knobkerries.

These are weapons that were recently banned by police and one wonders how people who were armed with the traditional weapons could be let to move around if they meant peace.

This could yet be another episode of selective application of the law, where one group is allowed to move around armed with traditional weapons while others are not allowed to do so.

What is important is that Mugabe must not only declare zero tolerance to violence verbally. He must go on to urge his supporters to desist from violent conduct. According to a local civic organisation — the Zimbabwe Peace Project — Zanu PF and the police are the major perpetrators of violence. Zanu PF accounted for 42 percent of all reported cases with the police following hard on the heels with 34 percent.

Violence has no place in modern society, where people can dialogue to solve issues affecting them. Besides, difference in opinion is what endears a nation as long as we are tolerant of each other’s views.

Comments (2)

Unfortunately Robert Mugabe believes in violence. According to him violence got rid of smith, violence silenced Joshua Nkhomo and his people in the 80's,violence was used in 2008...Todii

Young Zimbo - 4 October 2016

police vehicles pliz recruit mature drivers for that not those in the force they will force the vehicles

policevehicles - 5 October 2016

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