Election Violence 2008 – here is the evidence

The Zimbabwean newspaper published numerous verified reports of election violence in 2008. Here is a selection from our archives for anyone whose memory needs jogging.

1500 MDC activists in jail as youth chairman battles for his life

MDC Pressroom–Over 1 500 MDC activists, including 20 MPs and parliamentary candidates, across the country are in police custody following a massive State-sponsored crackdown against the MDC.

The MDC supporters and members have been arrested on charges of being involved in political violence whilst most MPs are being accused of trumped-up charges of inciting political violence.The arrests come at a time when 103 supporters who have been murdered by Zanu PF supporters but not a single Zanu PF supporter has been arrested. About 5 000 of our supporters, mainly polling agents and council candidates, are still missing after having been abducted by Zanu MP militia and Sate security agents in unmarked vehicles.

The continued onslaught of our structures shows that Zanu PF is not sincere in the so-called dialogue it says it wants with the MDC. The regime cannot talk dialogue when it is acting war across the length and breadth of the country.

The regime cannot be allowed to pretend that it wants peace when it is acting violence on the ground.Thousands of our supporters are still in the mountains, fearing for their lives while others are still in hospital nursing serious injuries sustained by Zanu PF and state security agents following the historic defeat of Zanu PF and Robert Mugabe during the watershed polls of 29 March 2008. Those polls remain the only credible polls that were deemed relatively free and fair by regional and continental observer missions.

The injured include Thamsanqa Mahlangu, the MP-elect for Nkulumane who is also the national youth chairman of the MDC. Mahlangu is battling for his life in a Harare hospital after being bludgeoned by Zanu PF thugs at an aborted rally at the Glamis Arena in Harare on Sunday, 22 June 2008. The MDC condemns the ongoing State-sponsored violence, which is meant to decimate the party and its structures.

There cannot be any meaningful dialogue while the regime continues to maim and kill with impunity with neither shame nor compunction.The people’s victory is certain. It can only be delayed but not aborted. The statistics of those in prison or in police custody are as follows:

Mashonaland Central: 145

Masvingo: 356

Mashonaland West:  114

Manicaland:  476

Harare:  31

Matabeleland South:  63

Matabeleland North:  59

Mashonaland East:  184

Chitungwiza:  11

Bulawayo:  9

Midlands South:  69

TOTAL:  1574

MDC Information and Publicity Department

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