The Youth Advocacy for Reform and Democracy (YARD) has condemned the recent politically-motivated violence recorded in the country saying it has a negative bearing on the 2023 harmonised elections. YARD said the attacks, which have mainly been targeted at opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) members, has no place in a modern democracy. The statement is issued following the arrest of scores of people, mainly ZANU PF youths, after the death of a CCC supporter at the party’s rally held in Kwekwe over the weekend. Pindula News presents YARD’s statement:
YARD STATEMENT ON THE RECENT CASES OF POLITICALLY MOTIVATED VIOLENCE- IMPLICATIONS ON 2023 HARMONIZED ELECTIONS
Another sad day for Democracy.
The Youth Advocacy for Reform and Democracy (YARD), joins the people of Zimbabwe, the forces for democracy and the family of Mboneni Ncube, a martyr who will forever be remembered as a symbol for democracy, at time humanity needs to ReState the Case for Democracy. We honour his life by continuing on the Journey to realize the socio-economic product of genuine and strong democratic institutions and Practices in Zimbabwe May his family be comforted, and receive maximum recognition. solidarity and compensation for a life that has been stolen. We condemn, with the contempt deserved, the rising cases of Politically motivated violence, which have been on the rise in recent weeks in Zimbabwe primarily the state-sponsored disturbances in Gokwe, and the terror attacks witnessed in Kwekwe, both at a rally organized by the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC). These attacks have no place in a modern Democracy. The character and consistency of these acts of violence are appearing to be targeted. directed and systemic, aimed at discouraging political participation in specific areas, a reality that constitutes flagrant disregard of the constitution The acts have continued to occur, whipped up by reckless political rhetoric, as extensively reported in mainstream media.
Familiarity exists between the violence which was last recorded in the 2015 By-elections. Some of these cases of reported violence were in Hurungwe West and were subsequently investigated and reported on as factual by the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission ref #s: ZHRC/Cl/38/15 (preliminary and final reports of the same numbers) and ZHRC/Cl/33/15 (on the invasion of Temba’s Spring Farm in Karon This serves as a sign that political intolerance and political violence, have continued to dominate the undercurrents of the political terrain in Zimbabwe, reference being made to the violence in 2000-2002, and the occurrence of political violence from 2005, gravitating towards a climax in 2008. A culture of Impunity and lack of capacity to police within the confines of the law have sustained violence as a means of confronting political differences, and such violence remains deeply intertwined in the culture of political parties.
Any efforts to encourage young people, women and children to register to vote and similarly participate in the political landscape. are betrayed by such acts of organized violence. Worrying is the convenience of using Machete-wielding terror gangs, in an area that is notorious for such attacks happening, which feeds into the perceived engagement of political figureheads, and their links with the terror gangs referred to as MaShurugwi’ in the Informal mining sector Zimbabwe needs to take note of such security threats before we lose control of our communities to ultra-legal entities that operate based on fear.
Fear is undoubtedly the endgame. and desire of all who engage in these uncouth and despicable acts Our Politics must never allow lives to be lost, more so with no legal resolution As YARD we will soon be rolling out programs that again reinforce efforts at inter-party generational dialogue. We will engage youths from Political Parties, community organisations and students, in building a political framework that allows the thriving of values of integrity, honesty, respect for human life and respect for diversity.
We call upon the Zimbabwe Republic Police and the Ministry of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Maas. to work diligently, in ensuring that we protect the constitution respect Human rights and ultimately root out the culture of impunity in all politically motivated crimes.
T. Mhungu YARD, DCIC, Information and Programs