UPDATED: Zanu-PF consoles violence victims’ families, appeals for calm

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

President Emmerson Mnangagwa

Farirai Machivenyika, Harare Bureau
ZANU-PF has sent condolences to the victims of the violence that was unleashed by rowdy MDC Alliance supporters in Harare on Wednesday.

Six people died when the supporters clashed with security details after they tried to storm the National Results Centre at the Harare International Conference Centre.

The thugs also destroyed property in the Central Business District and burnt several cars at the ruling party’s provincial headquarters.

Zanu-PF’s Secretary for Legal Affairs Cde Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, who is also its representative in the Multiparty Liaison Committee (MLC), laid the blame of Wednesday events squarely on the MDC Alliance.

“It is with heavy heart that we have to be addressing you today looking at events which took place,” he said. “It is unfortunate that we had to lose lives. We offer our condolences to the relatives of the deceased.

“We had held our elections in a peaceful environment and we were hoping that the situation would have obtained up to the announcement of the results and post the announcement.”

Cde Mangwana said no life should be lost because of political differences.

“It is our hope as Zimbabweans that we belong to different political parties, but no life should be lost as a result of political differences,” he said.

“We are waiting eagerly for the results to be announced, but as a party we are happy that the results announced so far by Zec show we have achieved more than two thirds majority in the parliamentary elections.

“We are expecting that these results become a reflection of what we are expecting from the presidential elections.”

Cde Mangwana said the MLC would soon meet to discuss Wednesday’s events, but blamed the MDC Alliance for the chaos.

“We are going to be meeting as the interparty dialogue team and discuss this matter,” he said. “We should all lose graciously, but there is no need to lose life, to lose property because of the loss of an election.

“I cannot speak on behalf of the army, but it is not entirely true that the protestors were not armed, they caused massive damage to property and massive damage to innocent people who were going about their chores.

“It is not at this moment to be apportioning blame, let us let the investigations to be complete and the truth will be revealed, but certainly it is supporters of MDC led by Chamisa who caused the trouble.

“I am happy that our supporters  exercised maximum restraint and were not involved.”

Cde Mangwana appealed to the MDC Alliance to restrain their supporters when the presidential elections results are announced.

“We are appealing to them that when the results are announced, and they realise officially that they have now lost, they must be able to tell their supporters that let’s allow this process to be completed there will be another day for political contestations,” he said.

“We can only be voted into office by people who are alive. We appeal to all Zimbabweans, particularly our supporters that they should exercise maximum restraint like they did yesterday (Wednesday) in the face of any provocation from any quarter.

“We appealed to our supporters yesterday when the Chamisa-led MDC started provoking them to exercise restraint, that they did, and we are happy that they were not involved in any political fracas yesterday (Wednesday).”

Cde Mangwana called on Zimbabweans to remain calm and allow Zec to do its work.

“We are also appealing to other political parties that Zimbabwe comes first, no life should be lost in the pursuit of political agendas,” he said. “We need each other. We need to maintain peace.

“This is our country, we do not have any other home. We must treat each as family members. Political contestations will always come. Let this year be recorded that we as Zimbabweans are able to live together notwithstanding our political differences and political parties to which we belong.”