- Attempts by “a few rogue Zimbabweans” to destabilise the country in “league with foreign detractors” would be overcome, said Mnangagwa.
- Security agents were heavily deployed in the capital, Harare, and other major cities to stop a protest, which was scheduled for July 31.
- “We are at a tipping point, something is going to give,” opposition leader Tendai Biti said.
The president of Zimbabwe, Emmerson Mnangagwa, has today vowed to deal with the opposition by “flushing” them out. A visibly angered Mnangagwa has described the main opposition party as “terrorist,” and vowed to continue cracking down on his opponents.
Attempts by “a few rogue Zimbabweans” to destabilise the country in “league with foreign detractors” would be overcome, said Mnangagwa.
In Zimbabwe, several opposition members and government critics have in the past few days been arrested and a number of human rights protection organizations have accused security forces of illegally kidnapping some of them.
The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights organization, for instance, has said that it has represented more than 20 people detained by the nation’s authorities since July 31, when the military and police stopped an anti-government protest.
Today’s verbal attack on the opposition by Mnangagwa was a harsh one, with the president going bare knuckles in a speech on state television, in which he has also described the oppositions as “bad apples” that should be “overcome,” and said the arrests will continue.
“Those who promote hate and disharmony will never win. The bad apples that have attempted to divide our people and to weaken our systems will be flushed out. Good shall triumph over evil.”
Mnangagwa retorted during a live television address in a speech strategically delivered at a time when their is a lot of pressure against his administration over allegations of human rights violations. The hashtag #Zimbabweanlivesmatter has been used in social media to draw attention to the wave of arrests in the country.
Security agents were heavily deployed in the capital, Harare, and other major cities to stop a protest, which was scheduled for July 31, but was thwarted by the security apparatus. Some people who tweeted in support of the demonstrations or who tried to organize low-profile events were arrested, and others were attacked and tortured, according to human rights groups.
Tendai Biti, spokesman for the main opposition party, the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Alliance, reported that the situation had become “unsustainable.” He condemned the government for narrowing the democracy space and the massive corruption in the system. “We are at a tipping point, something is going to give,” Biti told AFP, warning that another military coup could be “around the corner.”
Zimbabwe, located in the South of the African continent, is rich in resources such as the mines of diamonds, gold, coal, iron, copper, platinum and other groups of metals. Years of maladministration and corruption have led to ongoing looting of these resources, which has greatly impoverished local communities.
The country’s former president, the late Robert Mugabe, in office since December 31, 1987, was notorious for violently repressing the opposition and manipulating the elections. Mugabe was forced out of office on 21 November 2017 by the army, which confined Mugabe to his home, then took control of the state television and prevented access to government buildings.
He was succeeded by his former Vice President, Mnangawa, who, many Zimbabweans hoped he would be a savior. Currently, however, an opinion by many in the poor sub-Saharan African country is that he is equally bad, if not worse than his predecessor, Mugabe. That’s going by the current state of the country, which is in an apparent serious social and economic situation.