Don’t be used – Tsvangirai tells forces

BY OUR CORRESPONDENT

HARARE - MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai has made an impassioned plea to security forces not to allow themselves to be used as instruments of oppression by the Mugabe regime.
Speaking at weekend rallies in Mutare and Harare, Tsvangirai said the armed forces in Z


imbabwe were paid peanuts and yet they were asked to be at the forefront of oppression. The salary increases they had been promised last year had still not materialised.
“When we go for the mass resistance you must remember that you are also poorly paid. You should not be used by Mugabe to fight your own people. I have in my possession pay slips of policemen. They come to my house every day complaining that they are suffering. Yet when Mugabe says crush the mass demonstration you are ready to shoot the people. You must not be used,” he said.
Specifically addressing military, the police, the CIO and the war veterans he said: “All of you should remember this when the day of the mass demonstration comes.”
Tsvangirai is on a country-wide tour to mobilise Zimbabweans for mass action against the Mugabe regime.
This Sunday he will speak in Victoria Falls, while members of his executive fan out into the rural areas and high density suburbs all over the country to roll out what they call the “Reach out” programme in preparation for mass action.
Tsvangirai implored his audiences to remain peaceful at all times, so as not to give Mugabe and his trigger-happy henchmen a justifiable excuse for using violence.
Meanwhile State Security Minister Didymus Mutasa this week reiterated threats that the government would use armed soldiers and police to crush mass protests.
“We will not fold our arms while the country burns,” said Mutasa. He mockingly challenged Tsvangirai to march alone “along Samora Machel Avenue … then he shall see that we mean business.”
Earlier this year the commander of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, General Constantine Chiwenga, told Mugabe that his failure to implement the salary increases promised to the forces before Christmas would place the security of the Zanu (PF) government in jeopardy.

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