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Police bar Makoni meeting

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POLICE on Saturday barred Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn (MKD) leader Simba Makoni from addressing the Norton business community as the crackdown on opposition political parties escalates ahead of crucial polls later this year.

REPORT BY ELIAS MAMBO

MKD was on Friday permitted to address the business community in Norton as the political party launched its Conversations with Simba Makoni project, which is expected to be rolled out countrywide.

But a few hours before Makoni addressed the gathering, police informed MKD of the cancellation of the event without giving any reason.

“We are very much worried because it seems there is a continued crackdown by the police to bar the opposition from addressing the electorate as the country marches towards elections,” MKD spokesperson Evans Sagomba said.

“The police did not explain why they had to cancel our meeting after permission had been granted.”

Sagomba also said Makoni was supposed to pass by a local orphanage in Norton where he was scheduled to donate some foodstuffs, but this could not proceed.

“The president (Makoni) was supposed to meet children at a local orphanage in Norton and donate foodstuffs, but this was also cancelled since there were threats of arrests if he did not heed police instructions,” he said.

The banning of rallies of political parties other than Zanu PF is likely to stoke tensions between the coalition government partners as Zimbabwe heads for presidential, parliamentary and local government elections this year.

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