MDC youths threaten demo over Chingwizi

The MDC-T Youth Assembly is considering unspecified action against the government over police and army brutality against villagers at Chingwizi Transit Camp.

Chingwizi Transit Camp
Chingwizi Transit Camp

The army recently torched tents donated by well-wishers at Chingwizi camp in a retributive attack to the burning down of two police vehicles by angry inmates last week, a development that attracted the MDC-T anger.

The vehicles were set on fire by villagers protesting against the government removal of medical facilities from the camp.

The ensuing skirmishes resulted in the arrest of some 300 inmates. President Mugabe has warned that people engaging in illegal protests would be dealt with accordingly.

Clifford Hlatywalo, MDC-T Youth Assembly spokesperson, told The Zimbabwean that in light with the Chingwizi disturbances and other Zanu (PF) shortcomings, his organisation would take the regime head on anytime soon.

“We are more ready than ever to demand our freedom and jobs. As one of our founding values we will stand for the poor and protect the vulnerable like Chingwizi inmates,” said Hlatywalo, calling for the unconditional release of those arrested and immediate stop of the harassment of victims by the military and police.

The Youth Assembly called for a clear and sustainable government plan to resettle the villagers who have been at the Transit Camp since February, 2014.

The resettlement plan would include transport and compensation among other prerequisites. Hlatywalo said MDC-T believed in real upliftment of the ordinary people and protection of the vulnerable.

According to Hlatywalo, the inmates who are now scattered in mountains following the police and army ‘brutality’, suffered serious trauma at the hands of the illegitimate Zanu (PF) government.

Their donations were looted by government ministers and other officials responsible for the distributions.

“As Zanu (PF) displays its brutality against defenceless citizens at Chingwizi and the general people’s suffering, the ruling party’s empowerment songs have subsided.”

The Chingwizi clampdown, the MDC-T said, left inmates scattered all over the show exposed to the chilly weather.

This includes women, the elderly and children. There are unconfirmed reports that one child died as a result of the siege.

Sources revealed that people with identification particulars starting with 12, suggesting that they originated from Chivi district, are being arrested in the area.

Chingwizi Transit Camp inmates were relocated from areas in the Tokwe-Mukosi basin to escape flooding at the height of the last rainy season.

Government said some 18 000 people from 3 000 families were at the camp, a figure disputed by inmates who put it at over 30 000.

MDC-T Youths have this year clashed twice with police as the law enforcement agency attempted to suppress the youths’ protests aimed at forcing government to deliver the Zanu (PF) promised 2.2 million jobs.

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