HARARE – Police have stopped Zanu-PF from staging a demonstration at the American Embassy in Harare against the brutal murder of a black American George Floyd and the illegal sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.
The ruling party’s demonstration which was set for June 4, according to the police, was in violation of the Covid-19 lockdown laws.
“While the demonstration is for a noble cause, it contravenes Section 5(1) of SI 83 of 2020 of the Covid-19 lockdown offences.
“Take note that gatherings of whatever purpose, are prohibited during this period save for those exempted in the statutory instrument.
“May you please shelve the idea at the moment until we have passed this pandemic phase,” reads the letter by the police command for Harare Suburban District.
Zanu-PF Commissariat director Dr Davison Gomo said the party will abide by the laws of the country.
“We are subject to the laws of the country, just like any other political organs. We will comply with the decision of the police.
“This is perfectly in order.
“We have always notified the police when we have gatherings or events of this nature.“We only proceed when the police allow us,” Dr Gomo said.
“Despite the decision of the police, it is important to raise the point that Americans have no basis to declare us an enemy without any grounds at all.
“There is no basis for that. We pointed out that their police have no right to suffocate and murder a person.“As Zimbabweans, we have a right to raise concern when a black person is murdered by the State,” said Dr Gomo.
Meanwhile, South Africa’s government has called on security forces in the United States to use “maximum restraint” in responding to the protests over the killing of George Floyd.
The statement cites Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor as saying that just as Americans supported South Africa in its struggle against apartheid, “South Africa, too, supports the clarion calls for practical action to address the inadequacies highlighted by protesters.”
The statement also warns that the violence marking some of the protests in the U.S. “seriously detracts from drawing international awareness to the legitimate concerns about violence against defenseless black people and other minorities in America.”
The statement ends by expressing the belief that the U.S., “a beacon of freedom for many worldwide, has the ability to directly focus on healing and peace.”
Pope Francis says he has ’’witnessed with great concern the disturbing social unrest” in the United States in reaction to the killing of George Floyd, and called for national reconciliation.
“My friends, we cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life,” the pope said during his weekly Wednesday audience, held in the presence of bishops due to coronavirus restrictions on gatherings.
At the same time, the pontiff warned “nothing is gained by violence and so much is lost.”
Francis said he was praying “for the repose of George Floyd and all those who have lost their lives as a result of the sin of racism” and issued his condolences for all those who grieve their loss. He called for national reconciliation and peace.