Zanu PF has launched a new “terror” campaign dubbed “Zanu PF: The Unstoppable Machine”, that other political players have described as a tool aimed at instilling fear into the population.
The political parties described the move as President Robert Mugabe’s desperate bid to cling onto power ahead of impending general elections next year.
The campaign is contained in newspaper advertisements recently flighted by the party’s national chairman, Simon Khaya Moyo.
The development comes barely two months after the party caused a storm in the shaky coalition government when it launched political jingles on national television and radio praising Mugabe as a supreme leader.
Zanu PF has been accused of using violence as a campaign tool during elections.
During the run-up to the June 27 2008 presidential election runoff, hundreds of MDC-T supporters were killed in the violent campaigns allegedly orchestrated by Zanu PF activists.
“Cognisant of the fact that the land reform programme is now complete and also irreversible – the thrust being now on economic emancipation of our entire people and unity of purpose,” said party chairman in adverts flighted in local newspapers, “offshoot political parties will remain offshoot, offside and scoring own goals.
The legacy left by our fallen heroes should never allow any visionary Zimbabwean to live on borrowed oxygen.”
MDC-99 leader Job Sikhala said this was one of the many ways that Zanu PF was trying to use in order to hang onto power.
He called on the people of Zimbabwe to ignore the latest manoeuvres saying Zanu PF would not win a free and fair election.
“They are simply desperate and hungry to stay in power,” said Sikhala. “No matter how hard they will try, Zanu PF cannot win any election,” Sikhala said.
Mugabe, who is on record as saying his party was ready for elections, has reportedly ordered Finance minister Tendai Biti to set aside $200 million for fresh elections in his forthcoming 2011 National Budget.
Biti was instructed to make a special provision of $100 million for the referendum on the draft constitution and another $100 million for the holding of elections.
However, MDC-T national spokesperson Nelson Chamisa scoffed at the new campaign and said: “Zanu PF is neither a machine nor in motion.”
The Morgan Tsvangirai-led party last month took the issue of Zanu PF propaganda jingles being played by the national broadcasting radio and television stations to the facilitators of the Global Political Agreement.
Political parties have described the jingles as out of tune with the spirit of inclusivity.
The Dumiso Dabengwa-led Zapu said it was evident that the so-called Zanu PF machine was unstoppable in a negative way.
The party’s director for communication, Methuseli Moyo, said after 30 years of hanging onto power the people of Zimbabwe were ready to speak out clearly in the next elections.
“The people of this country will stop Zanu PF at the election. The continued stay in power of Zanu PF is retrogressive to the development of this country. Going into the future, there is no place for Zanu PF,” said Moyo.
He said Khaya Moyo was still trying to endear himself to Mugabe for giving him the opportunity to be the chairman of the party.
“He is only up there and still trying to impress his handlers,” added Moyo.
MDC-M spokesperson Edwin Mushoriwa described the adverts as a cheap propaganda stunt that was bound to fail.
“Zanu PF is totally out of sync with reality. What they are saying is the opposite of the reality on the ground,” said Mushoriwa. “The party has become a bunch of greedy and corrupt people.
What liberation fighters fought for and what Zanu PF is promising are worlds apart.”