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Opinion / Columnist

Soldiers and police should be alert for any violent demos

20 Feb 2019 at 23:24hrs | Views
Many businesses that were prejudiced of more than $500 million in damages and unrealised earnings following last month's violent demonstrations organised by the MDC Alliance and backed by some NGOs, are yet to resume operations.

Six people were killed including, a police officer following the three-day terror attacks that saw more than 30 vehicles being burnt and a number of innocent civilians being assaulted by hooligans during an orgy of violence in the different cities and towns.

Constable Maune of ZRP Entumbane, Bulawayo was stoned to death while other deaths were recorded in Chitungwiza and Kadoma. Several other individuals were injured including about 80 police officers during the violent protests which saw hooligans barricading roads, torching vehicles, extorting money from motorists, looting groceries from retail outlets and in some cases setting the buildings on fire.

The worst affected was Bulawayo where most retail shops in the western suburbs were looted and in some cases the buildings were set on fire.

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions working with some non-governmental organisations and the MDC Alliance called for the three-day protests which were disguised as demonstrations against the increase in the price of fuel when in fact they were meant to make the country ungovernable hence the orgy of violence.

The MDC Alliance has threatened to stage a second round of illegal and violent demonstrations meant to destabilise the country and we are saying this should not be allowed. President Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe is a peaceful country and Government would not brook any mischievous acts bent on causing anarchy.

He said Government will deal decisively with such hooligans that want to cause the suffering of innocent citizens. We want at this juncture to call on the security forces to be on alert to avoid the destruction of property and loss of lives as what was witnessed last month.

The security forces as we have said before, should take pre-emptive measures to protect life and property as opposed to reacting when the damage has already been done. Businesses cannot be subjected to another round of destruction by selfish individuals that want to effect a regime change through violence.

The message should be loud and clear that anarchy will not be accepted in Zimbabwe because it infringes on the rights of citizens. What probably is coming out clear is that the sentences being meted on hooligans that participated in last month's violent protests are not deterrent enough hence MDC Alliance's defiant stance.

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Source - The Chronicle
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