The sanctions against the people’s right to protest must go
In a brazen affirmation of selective application of the law in Zimbabwe, the police have allowed Zanu PF to hold its anti-sanctions march in Harare this week while proscribing the same Constitutional right of ordinary citizens to hold peaceful protests against the deteriorating the economic situation in the country.
Ironically, selective application of the law is one of the 10 national grievances that Zimbabweans wanted to march against in the legitimate protests that were brutally foiled by the police in Harare and several other towns.
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That the police have now allowed Zanu PF to hold demonstrations while preventing others from exercising the same Constitutional right is one of the key issues at the centre of the crisis in the country. What is good for the goose must certainly be good for the gander and this selective application of the law must stop forthwith.
While Zanu PF members will be freely exercising their right to protest this week, 27 innocent Zimbabweans were denied bail and are currently languishing in prison for wanting to exercise the same right that has now become the sole prerogative for members of Mr Emmerson Mnangagwa’s political party.
It has now been confirmed that the Constitution is only for Zanu PF members and not for the millions of innocent Zimbabweans suffering the brunt of a burgeoning economic crisis to which the regime in Harare has no solution.
It is only Zanu PF members who must exercise their Constitutional rights while the rest of the citizens must have the same sacred right proscribed by this rogue regime that brazenly stole the 2018 election.
If a regime can steal people’s rights in broad daylight, it must come as no surprise that the same regime could routinely pilfer the sovereign will of the people, with neither shame nor compunction.
Zimbabwe has simply become a banana republic.
SADC must see the regime in Harare for what it truly is. It has become a rogue regime that is proscribing the rights of ordinary citizens while arrogating the same rights only to Zanu PF members.
It is these internal sanctions against innocent Zimbabweans that are the reason for the people’s quest to hold peaceful marches. It is these sanctions against the people that must go first before we even plead for any external sanctions to go.
Charity begins at home.
We urge SADC and the AU to take stern action against this selective application of the law. It is this selective application that formed part of a raft of national grievances that Zimbabweans wanted to peacefully protest against.
MDC@20: Celebrating 20 years of courage, growth and the people’s victories.
MDC Deputy National Spokesperson
Tuesday 3 September 2019