Mangunje (New Ziana) – President Emmerson mnangagwa on Saturday reiterated his call for a peaceful general election next month to ensure the outcome of the August 23 vote was beyond reproach.
Addressing a packed ruling ZANU PF party rally at Magunje Growth Point in Hurungwe, he said the prevailing peaceful environment in the country should continue throughout the campaign, voting and post-election periods.
Peaceful election has been a consistent message of President Mnangagwa on the campaign trail; always underlining that what united Zimbabweans far outweighed what divided them, such as political party persuasions.
“We in ZANU PF despise violence, we want peace so it must be understood that it’s our desire, we the people of Zimbabwe, particularly ZANU PF. We want peace, and unity before, during and after elections,” he said.
“Last time in 2018 we achieved two of these requirements which were (peace) before and during the elections but after, some detractors started fomenting violence,” he added, referring to opposition calls to overturn the outcome of the election by all means.
Scores of people died in the violence that ensued.
President Mnangagwa said ZANU PF will continue to preach peace, unity, respect, love and harmony, and commended all Zimbabweans for the prevailing peace so far.
He called on all village heads, headmen, chiefs and other traditional leaders to continue preaching peace in their communities.
He said note had to be taken that the August 23 elections had attracted observers from outside the country keen to see if they will be conducted in a peaceful and harmonious manner.
These are drawn from, among other organisations, the Southern African Development Community, African Union, United Nations and the European Union, with some already in the country.
But President Mnangagwa said a peaceful election environment was desired more by Zimbabweans, and not just designed to please foreign poll monitors.
He said the Mangunje rally, bigger than the first two he has held in Chipinge and Bulilima, showed that the people believed in the revolutionary party, ZANU PF and it’s policies.
He thanked Mashonaland West Province, self-styled Mashonaland Best in ZANU-PF circles, for the overwhelming attendance which he said should translate into votes.
“I wonder whether you people of Mash West know what your attendance mean. ZANU PF has sounded the trumpet and drums for the country’s population to unite and safeguard the country’s inheritance and you responded. The young, men, women, the old, war veterans and all strata of our population is here. We are here to agree that on 23rd August we shall all rise in our numbers to vote for our inheritance,” President Mnangagwa said.
He said the country needs to continue to respect the heroes and heroines who fought and died for Zimbabwe’s independence from British colonial rule by voting to safeguard the national inheritance through the revolutionary party.
“From Chirundu to Beitbridge, from Plumteee to Mutare we are one nation, one sovereign people as a result of the blood that was shed by men and women as reflected on our country’s flag and national anthem. On Aug 23 we across the board must go out in our numbers and vote for ZANU PF. ZANU PF is unstoppable and all those that stand in its path would be destroyed. Since 1980 we are marching and continue to march and the best one can do is to join it (ZANU PF),” he said.
“A vote for ZANU PF is a vote for independence, a vote for ZANU PF is a vote for freedom, a vote for ZANU PF is a vote for dignity, an identity and prosperity to our people, the people of Zimbabwe.”
He congratulated all candidates that have been successfully nominated to represent ZANU PF. and wished the losers better luck next time.
He warned losing candidates against opposing party rules and regulations, and instead wait to be deployed elsewhere.
“Even the winners did not form ZANU PF, they found it there. Some of us grew up in ZANU PF but even after 64 years we still pay reverence to the party so if you are a sincere member of ZANU PF you get deployed and not deploy yourself,” President Mnangagwa cautioned.