Zanu (PF) planning to win by foulest of means

mugabevigilaHARARE While confusion reigns over forthcoming elections, President Robert Mugabe's Zanu (PF) is working feverishly to ensure that it wins any election by the foulest of means. (Pictured: President Robert Mugabe)

The party has begun a campaign of violent intimidation, cynical and corrupt exploitation of the empowerment issue and unconscionable abuse of power. Last week in Nyanga, war veterans began invading lodges owned by white tourism operators, ostensibly to hit back at western targeted sanctions imposed on Zanu (PF).

Food continues to be used as a political weapon. Distribution of food aid in Zimbabwe, where two million people face hunger, has become a political hot-potato, much to the chagrin of humanitarian agencies battling to implement life-saving programmes.

The MDC said in a recent statement that it was dismayed by countrywide reports of partisan distribution of agriculture inputs by Zanu (PF) politicians and cabinet ministers, “which represent a sad and stark reminder of a culture of patronage and use of food and poverty as instrument of control and a political weapon.”

Just last week, the MDC blew the lid off the involvement of foreign embassies in Harare in bankrolling Zanu (PF). The MDC singled out Libya, which is donating tractors to Zanu (PF)’s campaign.

The continuing occupation of farms and planned invasion of British companies by Mugabe’s supporters is central to the ruling party’s election strategy.

Driven from their homes, many thousands of presumed opposition supporters will be disqualified from voting. Sheer terror will also play its part, observers are already warning. The MDC reported on Monday that Elson Mutonhori, that party’s Masvingo South secretary, was on Saturday morning abducted at gunpoint by Major-General Engelbert Rugeje and one Major Toperesu at his Renco Mine home.

“Rugeje and Toperesu who were driving an unmarked white Mitsibishi truck took Mutonhori to the Rock Motel in Chivi some 100 km away, where they interrogated and intimidated him until midnight,” the MDC said in a statement.

“Mutonhori was asked why he had worn an MDC T-shirt during the festive season.” He was later released unharmed after being interrogated. Zimbabwe’s security forces has frequently used political threats, unlawful detention and psychological torture to thwart opposition to Zanu (PF).

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