An Update on Human Rights Violations in Zimbabwe

Week ending (18-09-16)

Sylvanos Mudzvova

Sylvanos Mudzvova


Area Outlook Situation on the Ground
Chivi ward 25 Tense Youth Officers led by ZANU PF ward chairman, Tongai Mafuze held a meeting at Madzivire dip tank ward centre on 17 September 2016. At the meeting, they told villagers that ZANU PF has adopted a new voting system where people vote in alphabetical order. Each village should be led by the village head who will assist in the process of identifying those who vote for opposition parties in future elections. Mafuze also told people that anyone seen wearing opposition party regalia, will be “dealt with” by ZANU PF youths and will have their names removed from the food aid distribution list. Headman Madzivire was also part of the people who attended the meeting.
Mazowe Central ward 11 Tense On 16 September 2016, ZANU PF Youth Chairperson, Nesbert Gatsi and ZANU PF youths  moved around in the ward threatening people against participating in the National Electoral Reform Agenda (NERA) that was supposed to be held on 17 September 2016.The NERA demonstration was to push government to implement electoral reforms ahead of the 2018 elections. The demonstration was supposed to commence at Muchirikuenda Business centre and end at Nzvimbo Growth point. Gatsi openly told people that Detective Kachigamba who is stationed at Chombire police station had given him a  directive  that they should write down names of people who participate in the demonstration so that they can be arrested. Gatsi further assigned people to identify the addresses of the MDC-T District chairperson, Patrick Bhozha and MDC-T District Organizing Secretary Mavura Dembere whom they accuse of mobilizing community members to participate in the demonstration. Gatsi warned people against participating in the activities of opposition parties, as this will force ZANU PF  to set up bases in the area as a counter strategy.
Gutu Ward 33 Moderate Soldiers stationed at 4.2 Infantry Battalion moved around the ward on 16 September 2016 threatening people that all those planning to participate in the NERA demonstrations would be beaten up. The NERA demonstrations were supposed to take place at Mupandawana growth point but failed to kick off because of heavy police and army presence. The same soldiers from the battalion were also heavily deployed at Mupandawana Growth point and Hwiru suburb where they issued similar threats.
Gutu ward 6 Moderate At a meeting held at Hwizhu business centre on 18 September 2016, ZANU PF Councillor, Michael Bhema told people at the meeting that he was worried by the increase in the number of opposition supporters in the ward. Bhema warned that he was monitoring all people who were working with Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO’s) whom he accused of promoting activities of opposition parties. He also warned that if people in the ward continue working with opposition parties and NGOs, they risk having their names removed from food aid beneficiaries list.
Nyanga North ward 8 Moderate Brian Nyagura a ZANU PF youth officer is intimidating community members in Nyautare area in Nyanga ward 8. On 18 September 2016, Nyagura assaulted a teacher at St Monica secondary school whom he accused of being an opposition supporter having seen him reading a copy of Newsday newspaper. Nyagura accused the teacher of “selling out” and told him that opposition newspapers such as Newsday were not allowed in the area. Earlier in the month of September, Nyagura also assaulted Kelvin Chipika, an MDC-T member for wearing his party regalia at Dumba business centre. Although a police report was made, Nyagura was never summoned to a police station or arrested.
Uzumba  ward 6 Moderate After members of the police denied organizers of the NERA demonstration in Uzumba ward 6 permission to demonstrate at Mutawatawa growth point, ZANU PF youths on 17 September 2016, camped at the venue where the demonstration was supposed to take place. They started singing sloganeering and openly told people who had come for the demonstration that they were going to assault anyone who would participate in the demonstration. The youths also told people that they are immune to arrests since the police “belong” to their party. As they continued to camp at the venue, an unidentified blue Ford ranger truck without number plates was spotted patrolling at the growth point. The four men in the vehicle asked vendors at the market if they knew the person who had mobilized community members for the demonstration. Most opposition supporters in the area who occupy leadership posts have since fled the area and sought refuge in nearby districts.
Mbire ward 17 Moderate On the 15th of September 2016, ZANU PF Councillor, Themba Zuze together with the ZANU PF ward chairperson, Shudern Bandira held a meeting at Majongwe Primary school. At the meeting, they openly told villagers that everyone in the ward should support their party or risk being barred from receiving food aid. They warned that all opposition supporters will continue to be sidelined from food aid as this will “teach them a lesson” on who to vote for in the 2018 elections.
Mudzi North ward 1 Moderate On the 17th of September 2016, MP for Mudzi North, Newton Kachepa held a soccer and netball tournament at Kungorwe primary school. At the tournament, Hon Kachepa told people that only those linked to his party will continue to receive food aid in the ward. Kachepa also warned all opposition supporters in the area that if they don’t vote for him again in the 2018 elections, they will continue being sidelined from food aid.
Chinhoyi ward 3 Moderate On 17 September 2016, ZANU PF youths destroyed window panes at the house of MDC –T member, William Nyambi accusing him of mobilizing people to participate in the NERA demonstration that took place in Chinhoyi town centre. The youths also targeted the house of Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) Interim Chairman, Damson Mapfumo where they also broke windows and asbestos sheets. At the time of the attack, Nyambi and Mapfumo had fled their homes after they received tip offs from locals in the area that they were being targeted. The ZANU PF youths who attacked the houses accused the two of mobilizing community members to participate in the NERA demonstration. The matter was reported at Chemagamba police station but no arrests have been made to date.

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