Eswatini’s largest opposition party, the People’s United Democratic Movement (PUDEMO), has condemned the violence perpetrated against the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) by members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) and ZANU PF activists.
In a statement yesterday, PUDEMO Secretary General Wandile Dludlu condemned the teargassing of CCC supporters in Gokwe by police on Saturday and the violence that rocked the opposition party’s rally in Kwekwe on Sunday that left one person dead.
On Saturday, ZRP disrupted a CCC rally in Gokwe, using tear gas, water cannon and batons against the party’s supporters to thwart the rally even though it had been given a go-ahead by the High Court.
On Sunday, at a rally held at Mbizo 4 Shopping Centre, a violent ZANU PF militia that was armed with machetes, spears and knobkerries attacked CCC supporters who were in attendance resulting in at least one loss of life and dozens of injuries. Said Dludlu:
As an organisation that is committed to the maintenance of peace in our region, Africa and the world at large, we are concerned about such stubborn acts of violence.
Violence against opposing stakeholders in our region by ruling governments is sadly becoming an acceptable norm.
This is undoubtedly a threat to the development of our region as genuine development has proven to be anchored on peace, respect for human rights and good governance.
We, therefore, project our condemnation of the State’s violent response to genuine calls for democracy and good governance.