Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai – who faces Mugabe in a run-off
presidential election next month – said Mugabe’s political career was
finished, adding that the veteran leader’s violent campaign to intimidate
Zimbabweans to grant him another five-year term in office will fail.
“Mugabe has lost direction and behaves like he is possessed, assaulting and
killing people for simply voting for the MDC (opposition Movement for
Democratic Change (MDC) party,” said Tsvangirai, who was speaking at the
burial in Murehwa of an MDC supporter who was murdered by suspected
activists of Mugabe’s ruling ZANU PF party.
Shepherd Jani, who contested the Murehwa senate seat on behalf of the MDC
but lost, was last week abducted from his shop at Murehwa rural business
centre. His whereabouts remained unknown until his bullet-riddled body was
found dumped in Goromonzi district about 100km away.
Tsvangirai, who earlier on Tuesday launched a fund to help victims of
political violence, says at least 50 supporters of his MDC party have been
killed by suspected state agents and ZANU PF militia since the opposition
party’s victory in the March 29 presidential and parliamentary elections.
The opposition party claims the killings are meant intimidate its supporters
to vote for Mugabe in the June 27 run-off presidential election or
alternatively force them to stay away from the poll out of fear and thereby
hand Mugabe an easy victory.
The run-off election is being held after electoral authorities said
Tsvangirai defeated Mugabe in March but failed to garner more than 50
percent of the vote required to takeover power.
Tsvangirai said the violence and killings would not stop imminent political
change in the country, adding that Zimbabweans could no longer stand the
hunger and economic turmoil that have characterised Mugabe’s rule in recent
“He (Mugabe) is gone – people have rejected him and he cannot stop that.
People are supporting the MDC because they can no longer stand poverty and
joblessness, among other plethora of problems caused by ZANU PF,” said
Tsvangirai who was speaking in the vernacular Shona language.
The run-off election is being held amid worsening food shortages and an
economic recession shown in the world’s highest inflation rate of more than
165 000 percent.
Such a scenario would mean certain and emphatic electoral defeat for any
sitting government but analysts say a blistering campaign of political
violence against MDC structures and supporters might just tilt the scales in
favour of Mugabe. – ZimOnlinePost published in: News