Police block Chamisa rally

POLITICAL tempers flared again yesterday after police blocked opposition MDC Alliance leader Nelson Chamisa’s “thank you” campaign rally scheduled for Kwekwe this weekend, with the latter’s supporters threatening to defy the ban.

BY BLESSED MHLANGA

Chamisa, who still insists he won the July 30 presidential poll against incumbent President Emmerson Mnangagwa, had intended to go back to his supporters to thank them for “overwhelmingly voting him as president”.

His supporters yesterday vowed to defy the police ban and proceed with the rally, arguing that they viewed the blockade as a clampdown on the country’s democratic space.

This came a month after MDC Alliance activists engaged in fierce running battles with the police in Harare, culminating in the fatal shooting of seven people after soldiers intervened and fired live rounds into the city’s crowded streets.

In a written response to the MDC-T Kwekwe district chairperson Charles Madhihwa, Kwekwe police said the planned rally could not proceed because of a typhoid outbreak which has hit the nearby Midlands capital, Gweru.

“There has been a typhoid outbreak in the province.

Health officials are not allowing the public gathering,” Kwekwe police boss Chief Superintendent Conrad Mubaiwa said.

But MDC Alliance’s Mbizo constituency MP-elect, Settlement Chikwinya, who was involved in organising the rally, told NewsDay that the ban was a rude awakening to Zimbabweans that the Zanu PF-led government was not ready to depart from its past.

He warned that the opposition party would not take the directive lying down.

“The blocking of the rally, which is ostensibly sheltered as a health safety measure, is actually a closure of political space by a regime that knows the general public sentiment following the grand theft of the July 30 presidential elections,” Chikwinya said.


“The police are trying to block the people from meeting their leader and speaking to him.”

Chikwinya said the party had made a resolution to proceed with the rally despite the ban, saying they had made their own inquisition with Kwekwe district medical officer, Patricia Mapanda, who denied knowledge of the health alert.

“We view the decision by the police to be purely political and partisan and, for that reason, we have resolved to go ahead with the rally and ignore the ban,” he said.

“I have also spoken to president Chamisa, who indicated that they will approach the High Court to fight the ban.”

A State security agent who preferred anonymity said there were fears that Chamisa could rally his supporters to protest against the government and there were attempts to contain the wave.

“The general feeling is that the rallies could be used to galvanise violent protests, the kind that rocked Harare on August 1.

So the move is to ensure that the rallies don’t happen,” the source said.

Chamisa has lined up countrywide “thank you” rallies, where he will also use as platforms to get feedback from his supporters on the way forward following the alleged theft of his victory by the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission and Zanu PF, in favour of Mnangagwa.

Mnangagwa has also lined up his own “thank you” rallies, expected to kick off when he returns from the Beijing summit on China-Africa Co-operation, which ends mid-next week.

The Zanu PF leader is expected to leave for the summit today after officially opening this year’s edition of the Harare Agricultural show.

11 Comments

  1. after what you did in harare when you went on an orgy of violence burning cars and shops looting and attacking innocent civilians with stones you need to slow down for now we need peace we haven’t not recovered from that unprovoked nonsensical act.

    1. Fo sure kugona mbavha huyirongera not kuita mapitse nayo

    2. eliasha, you seem to be on a paid mission. The guilty are always afraid. Ian Smith tried all these methods of repression but they failed and it was only a matter of time before the real sons and daughters of Zimbabwe marched gallantly and triumphantly into Salisbury. Wisdom would favour letting these thank you rallies go ahead as long as they are conducted peacefully. True democracy will definitely come, it cannot be stopped but delayed.

  2. We need peace in this beautiful country of ours the only people who gain are the one at the top from all this. Lets build our country.

  3. When someone want to thank the people is that violence? Do not try to label wrong labels on other people. burning other people is not a good thing at all and looting other’s property is uncalled for but going around the country thanking those who voted for you is a brilliant idea, it must be done without hindrance.

    1. Thanking people for voting for him is okay, but when one says I got 2,6 million votes and supposed to be the president, then there is question mark on the timing of the rallies. Who does not know that Chamisa said he wants to consult people on the way forward and not thank them. I may be wrong, but Chamisa is up to no good. He fumes violence and wants to unleash violence and make the country ungovernable. Zimbabwe wants peace and may the Lord grant us the peace we need. Vanoda kutongwa na Chamisa at all cost, wait for the next elections. Zvemahumbwe kwete.

  4. when we were queuing for voting was there no typhoid??

  5. Dai zvaibvira mapurisa asatombobvumire marally iwaya zvachose kungoda kukonzeresa mhirizhonga nezvima youth zvakadhakwa nemusombodhiya kutendwa tinoda fani asi chimboti mirei

    1. no gathering iyo,kuda kuudza vanhu kuti demonstration.who suffers?we need peace ,wait for 2023.

  6. Saka vanoungana pamabank ngavarambidzwe

  7. stupids zanos think that takakotsira this time munotonga kumusha.we need jobs,we need cash,we needs roads,all these hapana kana chirikutaridza any change i think kutobata pfuti chaiko kurinani than mararamiro iwawa.zimbabweans are argasing a surprise soon mark my words

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