Latest News Editor's Choice

Opinion / Columnist

MDC polishes art of violence

22 Jan 2019 at 10:48hrs | Views
The blood thirsty opposition Movement for Democratic Change last week displayed its colours bare for all to see. Reports have it that eight civilians and a police officer have lost their lives so far in a senseless orgy of violence against defenceless private citizens. Millions of dollars worth of property has been destroyed, with yet to be quantified amounts of goods looted mainly from supermarkets owned and run by private citizens who have nothing to do with the grievances being protested about.  

The MDC has since its landslide loss to the ruling Zanu PF wielded every tool of coercion to drag Zanu PF either out of office or to a power sharing round table. Nothing in the demo is for the people but for the few faces peeping the streets from Harvest House, the command centre of the anarchy that took over the country beginning Monday. Rising to the occasion, the state apparatus has met the demand of the job at hand with commensurate efficiency; more than 600 suspects are so far in police custody, reported state security minister Owen Ncube. More suspects are rolling in.

The grievance, according to the decoy planners of the demonstration, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions was the fuel price hike effected Saturday midnight. The modus operandi was disguised as a stay away, not a street march, protest or looting party. However, the true modus operandi, which the real parent of the process, the MDC is desperate to label as a spontaneous process has every clear sign of a written script commanded by some deliberate and purposive hand with enough resources for the operation.

The complainants in the matter are workers, complaining to government over fuel pricing. How this matter ends up with a need to burn a ZUPCO bus or a Choppies supermarket baffles even the most unconcerned mind. How on this earth should a fuel price hike protest justify the burning of  private citizens' cars like what happened across the country? How does the issue at hand have anything to do with the goods of a hardware shop in Chitungwiza? Will looting a plough from the hardware or a quarter hind carcass from an abattoir lower the price of petrol at a service station?

How does attacking a police station and burning all its cars lower the price of petrol? The police service does not even fall under the ministry of energy nor the ministry of transport. The headquarters of the national oil procurer National Oil Company of Zimbabwe remains standing unscathed at Leopold Takawira Street. This exposes the lies that the demonstration had anything to do with the price of petroleum. Never was the name of the minister of energy and power development mentioned in the skirmishes of the gory 72 hours. The MDC must come clean in its political communication strategy and stop feeding the citizenry with dangerous lies that will endanger innocent lives.  
Government has every channel necessary for engagement with the citizenry through the Tripartite Negotiating Forum to iron out any matters needing government input. The opposition has access to Government in many corridors, formally and informally. How the Chamisa led MDC decided to leave all the avenues of dialogue and go into the street to cause bloodbath shows the party’s grievances are not for the worker. The party has its own private grievances with private ends; the end being to unseat a constitutionally elected government. The party had all the avenues of acquiring power constitutionally and fairly availed to them. It is availed every day and every minute but it chooses to use illegal means to acquire such power. This act of treason is a disfavour the peace loving people of Zimbabwe do not deserve at all.

According to section 59 of the Zimbabwe Constitution, every citizen has a right enshrined in the same constitution to demonstrate peacefully to register a concern to government, a private or public organisation or individual. Violence and the destruction of infrastructure, public and private property is illegal under any constitution under the sun.

As the law takes its course, the MDC is going to sing their age old tune; that of persecution. Ironically, it is the same MDC which mocks the wheels of justice as being inactive. The law only becomes the party’s darling when they approach it as complainants not when they are the opposite customers of the same system.

Until and unless the MDC has been schooled on the provisions of the law regards demonstrations, Zimbabwe will not achieve sustainable peace. Every stakeholder in justice delivery and the preservation of the rule of law and peace must work overtime to put the delinquent party in line. The absence of a firm hand in handling the party will see elusive peace evading Zimbabwe in the future.

Source - Chigumbu Warikandwa
All articles and letters published on Bulawayo24 have been independently written by members of Bulawayo24's community. The views of users published on Bulawayo24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Bulawayo24. Bulawayo24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.