by MARCUS MUSHONGA
HARARE, (CAJ News) – DISRUPTION of opposition party events, harassment and intimidation as well as discrimination during aid distribution, political tensions are already rising two years before the next general elections in Zimbabwe.
The governing Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF), in power since independence 41 years ago, is cited as the main perpetrator of the violations.
The Zimbabwe Peace Project disclosed it had recorded three incidents of disruption of political events, 88 cases of harassment and intimidation plus 23 cases of discrimination during aid distribution during the month of April.
“It appears the silly (election) season is upon us,” the non-governmental organisation stated.
“Judging by the incidents of human rights violations recorded in April countrywide, the ruling ZANU -PF party, which has always used brute methods to garner support ahead of elections, appears to have gone a gear up in laying the bed for the 2023 elections.”
It has been reported some ZANU-PF officials have declared the party would win the 2023 election by “whatever means.”
A report by ZPP quotes a traditional leader in Murehwa as declaring Movement for Democratic Change – Alliance (MDC-A) had no place in his village and they would not benefit from any government social welfare assistance until they openly denounced the opposition party.
In Zaka district, Masvingo province, a senior ruling party official has allegedly threatened to assault about 45 beneficiaries of the social welfare food aid if they failed to chant party slogans and cross the floor to ZANU-PF.
The above allegations are synonymous with Zimbabwean polls.
The military shot dead six people after protests during the announcement of President Emmerson Mnangagwa as the presidential winner.
The MDC-Alliance filed a legal challenge but lost.
– CAJ News