Heal Zimbabwe condemns in the strongest terms the attack of former Vice-President and leader of the National People’s Party (NPP) Joyce Mujuru and her supporters who were campaigning in Glen View. On 01 February 2018, Dr Joyce Mujuru who was in the company of her supporters was attacked and assaulted by suspected ZANU PF supporters. ZANU PF youths moving around in a kombi wielding stones intercepted the NPP team and began throwing stones and assaulting the NPP supporters. The NPP leader sustained minor injuries together with eight supporters but one of her members sustained severe head injuries. Heal Zimbabwe perceive such acts of intolerance as barbaric and uncalled for as the nation approaches the 2018 elections.
The incident comes at a time when Heal Zimbabwe had recorded numerous acts of violence across the country. Recently, in Zaka East ward 31, four ZANU PF youths, Kumbirai Chitokwane, Doubt Chitokwani, Forgive Chitokwane and Obert Sunamisai assaulted Amos Kumire a MDC T member who they accused of supporting MDC T party. On 02 January 2018, deadly clashes erupted near the MDC-T party headquarters in Harare between MDC-T youths and cellphone traders from Ximex complex. On 02 January again, a case of arson and assault was recorded in Epworth. Violent clashes erupted between two ZANU PF rival groups leading to the injury of two minor children.
Heal Zimbabwe notes that the attack on the NPP party is an indication of intolerance that is prevailing in the country, which if not addressed will compromise the prospects of peace and negatively influence free participation of people in electoral processes. Heal Zimbabwe calls upon principals and political parties to respect and enforce the Electoral Code of Conduct for Political Parties and Candidates and guarantee free participation of the electorate in the upcoming election. Political parties should be at the forefront of creating a conducive environment for the electorate to freely participate in the plebiscite without fear of future reprisals.
Political parties must take the centre stage of condemning violence and also put stringent measures of punishing all members who engage in violent processes. Heal Zimbabwe appeals to the police to investigate and arrest all the perpetrators involved in violent activities. The organisation further calls upon the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to put in place mechanisms that ensure elections are held in a free, fair, transparent and peaceful manner.
The National Peace and Reconciliation Commission (NPRC) which is mandated by the Constitution to set up an early warning and early response system responsible for early detection of potential violent conflicts and disputes must swiftly set up the important system in collaboration with churches and civil society in order to minimise incidences of violence as the nation approaches the election.
Heal Zimbabwe under its National peace Campaign: 13 Million Voices for Peace is moving around Zimbabwe appealing to all the citizens especially the youth to shun violence and uphold peace as the nation draws to the harmonised election.
Source: Heal Zimbabwe