Nduduzo Tshuma, Political Editor
THE Government will not tolerate any acts of violence by any political party ahead of the harmonised elections and perpetrators of such acts will be dealt with mercilessly, Home Affairs Minister Dr Obert Mpofu said yesterday.
Dr Mpofu was speaking in the wake of reports of violence at a National People’s Party campaign in Harare’s Glen Norah and Glen View suburbs allegedly by Zanu-PF supporters on Thursday.
Dr Mpofu who is also the ruling Zanu-PF’s secretary for administration said in line with President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s assurances to the world, the Government is committed to providing a peaceful environment towards elections and there won’t be sacred cows in the prosecution of perpetrators of violence.
“We condemn in the strongest terms the violence that was experienced in Glen View and Glen Norah yesterday which resulted in the attack on the president of NPP Dr Mujuru (Joice),” said Dr Mpofu in an interview with this paper in Bulawayo.
“The President has clearly stated not only to Zimbabweans but to the international community that no violence will be tolerated towards election time and we are directed that any form of thuggery, violence, or political hooliganism perpetrated on other parties will not be tolerated.”
Dr Mpofu said the police were on the lookout for perpetrators of political violence in the period leading to the national polls.
“We have directed the police to be on alert against such people who would want to interfere with our democratic processes that the President is fostering.
We will not tolerate any violence from whatever quarter be it any party that wants to achieve its objective through violence.
“Whether its Zanu-PF or opposition parties, the Government will not tolerate such actions because the President has come out in the open clearly stating that this coming election will be monitored by people from all over the world and it will be a free, peaceful and non violent election,” said Dr Mpofu.
“On our part we will ensure that no violence is allowed or condoned from whoever perpetrates it. We are going to descend on instigators heavily to ensure that we have a peaceful election and I want to warn all those that are prone to violent behaviour towards elections masquerading as representing political parties that they will be dealt with ruthlessly.”
President Mnangagwa has since his inauguration in November last year spoken at various fora pledging to ensure free, fair and non violent elections. The President has also welcomed international observers interested in observing the elections.
Ruling party secretary for information and publicity, Cde Simon Khaya Moyo said: “His Excellency, President Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa has consistently and persistently appealed to all Zimbabweans, irrespective of political parties they belong, to refrain from any form of violence in their day to day activities. Peace is a prerequisite for development.
Article Source: The Chronicle