All vendorsÂ operating in Mupedzanhamo in Mbare and those in central Harare had to close business Â before being frog marched by Zanu PF militia to the event which was held in honour of President Robert Mugabe, near the Rainbow Towers hotel.
NAVUZ said on top of violating citizensâ€™ constitutional rights of freedom of association, vendors who depend on selling wares for survival were left counting their losses after they had been forced to close shop and attend Mugabeâ€™s event.
The countryâ€™s constitution, which was adopted two years ago, guarantees freedom of association by stipulating that no person has a right to force anyone to belong to any outfit or to attend any meeting or gathering.
â€œNAVUZ is disturbed over the continued manipulation of vendors who are often forced to attend Zanu PF events or face eviction from their selling places in the event that they defy the order from the ruling party,â€ said the vendors union in a statement.
â€œTo us as, the continued manipulation and victimization of vendors by the ruling party reveals nothing but the indifference of those in the echelons of power to the plight of suffering Zimbabweans seeking to eke a living out of vending at a time when unemployment is estimated at over 90 percent due to a failing economy,â€ said NAVUZ.
The vendors said they were surprised to notice that the same party whose government unleashes police on them every day was soliciting for their support.
â€œWe are concerned that on a daily basis vendors are victimized by municipal cops and government officials continue to declare war on vending yet when it comes to political events, the same government manipulates the desperate vendors to boost attendance at political events,â€ said NAVUZ.
Post published in: Featured