State Security Minister Owen Ncube has threatened action against opposition leaders and civic leaders who “invite sanctions from Western countries” under the guise of defending human rights.
He made the threats in Gokwe last week while commissioning road equipment bought by Gokwe South Rural District Council. Ncube said:
Parliament will soon punish through appropriate policies and legislation, misguided elements who campaign for sanctions and punishment for the country under the guise of human rights narrative.
As we move towards 2030, we are aware of political impediments and negative elements who seek to derail the agenda 2030, we know them, let us all shun them.
They (opposition) are the authors of all problems in the country through sanctions they campaigned for.
Be warned, myself and others in the national security superstructure will never ever allow such violent malcontents to prevail in our motherland.
As State Security arms of the government, we assure the nation that we will continue to watch the environment very closely and will ensure we fulfil our mandate of ensuring peace, stability and development in Zimbabwe.
He said the government had realised that opposition leaders and human rights activists were behind the suffering of the masses as part of their broader objective of achieving regime change.
Zanu PF has been pushing for the controversial Patriotic Bill which seeks to amend the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act to criminalise support for the United States’ Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act and related sanctions on targeted individuals and organisations.
The Patriotic Bill also criminalises criticising of Mnangagwa and other government leaders.
Western powers including the United States of America and the United Kingdom imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe two decades ago following the fast-track land reform programme accusing the Mugabe-led regime of violating human rights.
They say sanctions will be removed when Zimbabwe has implemented recommended reforms.
Meanwhile, the 41st SADC summit 41st Ordinary Summit of Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government reiterated the regional grouping’s call on the unconditional removal of sanctions imposed on the Republic of Zimbabwe.