I am starving as Mugabe lives like a king

HARARE - Over one year after her house was destroyed by state agents during Operation Murambatsvina, Tendai Mwoyoweshumba has not known a roof over her head.
She sleeps on the pavement along Jason Moyo Avenue with her two year-old child outside a famous food outlet with her s

tomach almost empty.
She survives on left-overs from this store’s clients. She has been unable to locate her husband since their rented cottage in Mbare high density suburb was demolished by authorities during the operation estimated to have displaced more than 700 000 people and left them without any source of income.
She describes her husband as someone who was very caring and could provide for her.
“He is someone who could take great care of me and my kid but at times life is very unfair – you lose such a person and you don’t know whether you are going to meet him again,” she explained her situation with tears rolling down her cheeks like rivulets at the peak of the rainy season.
“When our house was destroyed by the police and army, my husband had gone to look for a part-time job since he was not gainfully employed and I had to sell second-hand clothes in kumakorokoza (gold panners) near Kwekwe. When I returned, all I saw were piles of rubble at what used to be our home. I lost all my belongings including my identity documents in the mishap,” explained Mwoyoweshumba.
“I then sought refuge here (in the street) because I had nowhere to go. My parents were of Malawian origin but they all died before they could take us to Malawi to show us where we originally come from and right now we don’t even know anyone or anywhere there,” added the woman.
“I don’t begrudge my husband for he is in the same predicament as I am in. He came from Mozambique with his parents when he was still young. He also doesn’t know his roots neither does he know where I am. There is no means of communication as we were all displaced, but I continue to pray that one day we will be together again aaaand,” said Mwoyoweshumba who could not continue as she started crying again.
With unemployment hovering around the 80 percent mark, Mwoyoweshumba says she has no hope of finding a job and currently has no source of income.
“I used to buy food with money that I beg for here but people no longer have it owing to the ongoing blitz in the financial sector.”
She can no longer practice vending because urban council by-laws prevent her from doing so, and although she tried to secure accommodation under the government’s accelerated housing delivery program, codenamed Operation Garikai/Hlalani Kuhle, all her efforts were in vain.
“We were asked to pay registration fees and I could not find a cent. I am just surviving by the grace of God and what worries me most is that most of the beneficiaries of Operation Garikai are those in Zanu (PF) and their immediate friends and relatives”.
“I have been reduced to a pauper when in actual fact I could fend for my family, despite the economic hardships in Zimbabwe. How can a government that claims to represent the interests of the people goes ahead to violate the interests and wishes of those same people? Those who sanctioned Operation Murambatsvina are living in villas like kings yet we, the people who voted them into office, are destitute. Honestly, this is unheard of in a democracy!” she fumed.
But Mwoyoweshumba is not the only one in this situation; the Combined Harare Residents Association’s acting chairperson Israel Mabhoo says hundreds of people are still homeless in and around Harare.
Mabhoo said those who were displaced by the government-sponsored exercise in Mbare and sought refuge on the shores of Mukuvisi River continue to receive eviction threats from authorities while those living in Glen-Norah’s former home industries area have also been told to vacate immediately or face forceful eviction.
“Several people have no accommodation as we speak. Some have to pile their valuable items worth millions of dollars in a single room offered by friends or relatives and the quality and value of the items continue to deteriorate as they are not being stored properly,” said Mabhoo.
Mabhoo said the right to property, including decent accommodation as guaranteed in the United Nations Human Rights Charter, has been taken away by the Harare administration.
Local government minister Ignatius Chombo says all those without accommodation will soon have a roof over their heads. “We are encouraging everyone who needs a place to stay or stand to contact our offices so that we can deal with these matters as a block and that would assist the government in planning effectively for its people,” said Chombo.
Mabhoo dismissed these comments as rubbish.

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