‘Jail Mugabe, not refugees’ demand protestors

GABORONE - More than 200 people from in and around Gaborone participated in an awareness march and rally last weekend to commemorate 'Operation Murambatsvina'. The campaign for solidarity an ini

tiative of BOCISCOZ (Botswana Civil Society Solidarity Coalition for Zimbabwe) gave a platform to both Zimbabwe and Botswana nationals to blast the Mugabe regime and advocate against xenophobia.
The marching session around the city of Gaborone saw placards condemning the government of Zimbabwe and appealing to SADC countries being waved.
Some of the placards read: Evict Zanu (PF) not the people, Down with Murambatsvina, Jail Mugabe not Refugees, Zimbabwe is a beautiful Country, Zimbabweans are beautiful people, Stand up and speak up about the situation in Zimbabwe.
The march went through the United Nations and SADC offices in Gaborone before passing through Vice President, Ian Khama’s residence.
At the rally politicians and representatives of civic groups in Botswana took turns to lambaste the Zanu (PF) government, while urging Zimbabweans to soldier on.
International Socialists Botswana (ISBO) distributed pamphlets at the rally calling for mass action by ordinary Zimbabweans.
“The power lies with the mass of ordinary Zimbabweans. Only mass resistance from below can bring real change,” read part of the pamphlet.
Botswana Congress Party (BCP), one of the leading opposition parties, through their Secretary General Taolo Lucas called upon the African Union (AU) not to be lenient with despots such as Mugabe.
On xenophobia Botswana’s MP for Tati East, Samson Guma Moyo, said Zimbabwe and Botswana should learn to co-exist with mutual tolerance and acceptance of each other as neighbours.
“We can only choose friends and not neighbours,” said Guma Moyo. His statement comes two months after he rescued a Zimbabwean national tied to a pillar at a village Kgotla (court) in Butali village.
The awareness march and rally was the first event in a vigorous six-week programme organised by BOCISCOZ from June 2 to 18 July to encourage solidarity with the millions suffering in Zimbabwe.

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