HARARE – Police have accused the opposition of planning to roll out protests against President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s controversial election victory and have warned they will crush such demonstrations.
This comes after the main opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) which commands a large following in the country has rejected Saturday’s results which gave the incumbent 52,6 percent of the national vote against his rival, Nelson Chamisa’s 44 percent.
In a statement on Sunday, national police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said the opposition was mobilising its members to carry out a false verification exercise in Harare when its real intentions were to embark on protests.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police is fully aware of attempts by some political activists to mobilise groups of people to move in small numbers and come to Harare for purported briefing and popcorn demonstrations under the guise of citizen voter audit or verification.
“This has even been given credence by some social media posts obtained by the police where some individuals and groups are openly inciting violence and issuing threats aimed at causing alarm and despondence among Zimbabweans.
“The police will not hesitate to effect arrests on such criminal elements,” Nyathi said.
He said, “Zimbabweans should feel free to go to their workplaces, to conduct family and other activities without fear or any form of intimidation from anyone”.
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police has deployed police officers throughout the country to maintain law and order.”
“Any form of unlawful political gatherings will be dealt with by the police in terms of the country’s laws,” Nyathi said.