MDC warmly welcomed in Alexandra

BY SIBANENGI DUBE
ALEXANDRA - Residents of the dusty Alexandra squatter camp on the outskirts of Johannesburg, believed to be housing half a million Zimbabweans, cheered and whistled as a motorcade of the local MDC leadership descended into the squalid informal settlement to open a branch.
The

leadership braved arrest from the xenophobic local police officers and flooded the rough terrain of Alexandra with loud music of the Makoni East choir, whose choruses denigrate President Robert Mugabe and his cronies as murderers.
Dressed in MDC regalia, the party leaders flashed out Zimbabweans out of their shacks with their passionate pleas, which boomed from car loud speakers.
We crossed the streets of the historic Alexandra through Second Street, much to the surprise of the locals who despise Zimbabweans as kwerekweres (foreigners). Scores of South Africans joined us in a rare display of unison.
We forced our way through the dirty streets of Alexandra to a huge shack. Stinking sewer from burst pipes did not soak the determinations of Zimbabweans who went ahead to choose their Alexandra leadership. The crime-plagued, filthy and populous township, which is notorious for car hijackings, was host to ritzy Zimbabwean-owned cars.
The Zimbabweans then crammed themselves into a shack where they listened to provincial organizing secretary Rogers Mudarikwa imploring them to join hands in a fight against the hurdles associated with living in a foreign country.
“We must come together to assist each other in overcoming the hardships we are subjected to in South Africa. Even if some of us are staying under bridges or trees, let’s start working together under the banner of MDC,” said Mudarikwa amid wild cheers from members of the audience.

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