'We'll fight fire with fire in 2018'

HARARE - The youth leader of former prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC, Happymore Chidziva, has warned Zanu PF saying the ruling party’s plans to unleash violence on opposition supporters in next year’s crunch national elections will be met with “interest” by fed-up Zimbabweans.

Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, the militant Chidziva said Zanu PF needed to know that there was “a limit” to what Zimbabweans could take in terms of the ruling party’s thuggery, and MDC youths were ready to defend peace-loving citizens.

He added that Zimbabweans were also ready to defend their votes in 2018 from “any sort of manipulation or irregularities” as had happened in previous polls.

“We are now ready to defend our future. We cannot allow Zanu PF to do whatever it wants with us and in 2018 we are absolutely going to defend people from Zanu PF’s terror campaign.

“What (President Robert) Mugabe and his party did in the Bikita West by-election does not scare us, and we are warning them that this time around they must not press this violence button again. Enough is enough,” he thundered.

Chidziva’s sentiments come as opposition parties and civil society organisations have said Zanu PF only won the Bikita West by-election by harassing and manipulating traditional leaders and ordinary voters.

“We have suffered enough as youths and as Zimbabweans and we are now ready to map our future. We are not going to allow Zanu PF to rig the 2018 elections as we are going to protect our votes and defend them vigorously,” he warned.

Chidziva also said it was high time that the government provided the millions of jobs it had promised in 2013, in addition to working hard to curb corruption and improve the country’s dying economy, as well as ordinary people’s access to healthcare.

He savaged the “appalling reality” which had seen Zanu PF bigwigs being fixated on looting and with their deadly tribal, factional and succession wars, instead of working to improve the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans.

“All the problems we face today as the youth have been a creation of Robert Mugabe due to his confirmed failure, hence we can’t allow ourselves to continue subjecting ourselves to the same troubles by allowing Mugabe to continue with his misrule.

“I would like to warn (Zanu PF youth leader Kudzanai) Chipanga that as ruling party youths they should stop fooling themselves that Mugabe will be a life president in this country because we as Zimbabweans will not fold our hands and watch such stupidity taking place.

“We remain convinced that the only solution to the country’s problems is the immediate and unconditional departure of Mugabe from office. He must go now. He is a colossal failure and the sooner we are rid of him the better,” Chidziva said.

Last year, Chidziva gave Zanu PF and the government a torrid time after he led many successful protests.

He said yesterday that while they would continue with their mass actions going forward, he was also urging all Zimbabweans, particularly the youths, to work to redefine their future by registering to vote in next year’s polls.

“After 2018, Zanu PF must be history. It’s time for us youths and all Zimbabweans to define our future by registering to vote,” Chidziva said.

And with the country’s political and economic rot continuing to escalate at an alarming rate, as Zimbabwe hurtles towards the make-or-break 2018 national polls, Tsvangirai says despairing citizens should remain calm but vigilant — “comforted by the knowledge that victory is certain”.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily News at the weekend, the buoyant and fit-again Tsvangirai also reassured edgy Zimbabweans that it was a matter of time before the planned opposition grand alliance — to take on the warring ruling Zanu PF in next year’s elections — was knit together.

“When we began this journey (struggle for a better Zimbabwe) almost two decades ago, we always knew it would be difficult and challenging, requiring much hard work and sacrifice.

“The good news is that it’s not much longer to go now and long-suffering Zimbabweans will soon get the change that they have long wanted. Indeed, victory has never been more certain than it is today.

“I call on all Zimbabweans to remain calm, but vigilant as our collective political and economic pain grows because of Zanu PF’s thuggery and misrule. Our struggle is not in vain and it’s definitely not long to go now,” the confident Tsvangirai said.

The former trade union leader — the only man to beat Mugabe in an election hands down, in 2008 — spoke after he savaged the government last Thursday for arresting activist preacher Evan Mawarire, warning that this was the beginning of a crackdown by panicking authorities on fed-up citizens ahead of the crunch 2018 national polls.

“The callous arrest in broad daylight of … Mawarire came as no surprise to those of us who have always known that a leopard remains faithful to its spots.

“This is vintage Zanu PF, and the message coming out of this arrest is that Zanu PF will go for broke in the campaign ahead of the next election. The world must brace for impunity and violence against the innocent citizens of our country.

“I condemn in the strongest of terms the impunity against an innocent citizen of Zimbabwe who has committed no crime. If the regime thinks this arrest will cow the people of this country, then we have news for them,” Tsvangirai said then.

“Zimbabweans will not be intimidated and they will fight for a truly free and fair election in which their voice will count.

“What happened at the Harare International Airport must send a chilling message, particularly to those in the region and in the broader international community who thought Zanu PF was capable of reform.

“There cannot be reform without reformers and this impunity is a reflection of the true character of Zanu PF. However, we have always been a heroic people and we shall not be cowed,” he added.

Tsvangirai also said former Vice President Joice Mujuru, who now leads the Zimbabwe People First (ZPF), had already proved to be a significant opposition player — and that the two would work together with others to dethrone Mugabe and Zanu PF from power next year.

“We know what Mujuru brings to the table and she knows what we offer, so those who say that a coalition is coming are not far off the mark,” he said.

Comments (9)

It is true that Zanu pf is spoiling for violence and will use it as an excuse to visit some draconian laws to silence Zimbabweans, but I say This boy is right. We must take their game to them. Robert Mugabe himself incited violence against Smith in those days and it worked. Now its him who have to face exactly the same justice

Ziggy Zigawo - 7 February 2017

Good show from the MDC youths. Let fire fight with fire now. Zvakwana and hatichada vanhu veZimbabwe. Enough is enough and even the Robbers and Muggers know it very well. The end is nigh. It seems that the Robbers and Muggers are panicking each day and night. The likes of Chipanga who are the boot lickers of the Robbers and Muggers have no space come 2018. Shadreck Chipanga and his zealots are day dreaming. Vanhu havachada cz Zimbabwe is rotten. Look at the roads, buildings and even the benches in the courts...maiwee.....ZANU PF yauraya nyika. Look at the old frail, senile old man...Shuu.....zvakaoma sekutakura hambuya/vamwene/mother in law pamudhudhudhu/motorbike. Grace rekukara...a typical wife of a dictator shuu...ring worth more than 1 and hald million dollars and in US $ vakamonana imi. Zimbos...and uzonzwa kamwe kamunhu kasina mari and kane nzara from Uzumba Maramba pfungwe or maramba pfungwa cz they have no brains at all achiti pamberi with the Robbers and Muggers. Kumwe kusafunga here kana hurema chaihwo. MDC should brace for another violent election. Another bhora musango now. Vachamama chete muzita reJesu.. Ndapedza ini mwana wemurozvi. Hamba back to Malawi or Mozambique...

Clemence Tashaya - 7 February 2017

Enough is enough this time Mugabe must go. ZANU-PF?s has be using violence since1985. It will be difficult for them to rig an election without violence. For rigging to take place there must be intimidation, killing of innocent people and abductions of Mugabe's opponents. To save Zimbabwe Mugabe's must just go now. Zimbabweans have suffered enough. Let's unite against this evil called ZANU-PF. Cde President Tsvangirai is telling us to be calm and vigilant. He is right let's not allow Mugabe to have a chance of performing his atrocities. TO SAVE ZIMBABWE MUGABE MUST GO. YOUTHS GO IN BIG NUMBERS AND REGISTER TO VOTE.

Maxmus Savanhu - 7 February 2017

Pamuromo chete.when the tyme comes there will be no show.

viola gwena - 8 February 2017

The problem with people like Viola Gwena is that they are retrogressive forces.Just like their beloved zanu pf mafia they still live in the past. What people failed to do yesteryear can be accomplished today so you should just shut your foul mouths and watch the space.Once bitten twice shy.

Janana wa Bikaz - 8 February 2017

Happymore Chidziva must stop boot leaking old Madaras and start fighting for youth empoweremnt in Mdc-t second Youths must not be barred from contesting like what happened in 2013.also fight for no female rserved candidates

munhu - 8 February 2017

Hey Guys, fights will not help but I would rather advise MDC to go to the grass roots and mobilise the youths to desist from Violence and go to the voter registration quietly to register to vote in numbers . The youth must get the free I.Ds being issued in Zim and have some time with the voter registration for the first time in the history of Zimbabwe. Just do this for the this time around and you will see what will happen to the dictator. Don't be violent , the only solution is for the 75 % youth population to go and register to vote and you will see that the tyranny will leave office without blood shed like Jemmer of Gambia. If you don't do that, you will always remain in the custody of the Dictator.

Rex Nhongo - 8 February 2017

Tsvangirai, Tsvangirai, a man who will never learn from his mistakes. What has changed Mr Tsvangirai? Laws have not yet been aligned to the constitution, demonstrations have slowed down and rigging machines seems to be intensifying. I do not see any light at the end of the tunnel. One other terrible mistake is the issue of the grand coalition. This has been on the lips of the opposition patrties for so many months now but nothing concret has been achieved. Suffer contintue the people of Zimbabwe!!

nhemacena - 10 February 2017

yes this is the only way to deal with the evil Zanu Pf who think they can just come anytime and assault people, retaliation is the best

Victim - 13 February 2017

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