Unrest in Zimbabwe’s capital

Harare hit by Rioters

HARARE’s eastern suburbs have been rocked by violent protests that have left hundreds of city-bound commuters stranded as commuter omnibus drivers fought running battles with police over the increasing number of roadblocks,

Although there has no been much specific detail, initial reports indicate business in the agricultural town of Marondera, 70 kilometers east of Harare has also been brought to a halt.

Most affected places are Ruwa, Mabvuku/Tafara, Hatfield and Epworth in the south-east of the capital.

Zimbabwe is tottering on the brink of implosion with more and more protests breaking out. Last week, property worth thousands of dollars went up in smoke after riots broke out in Beit-Bridge over government’s decision to ban foreign imports of mainly foodstuffs. At least 71 people were arrested 17 of who appeared in court on Sunday in the border town.

The suspects, 16 men and a woman, were not asked to plead when they appeared before magistrate Gloria Takundwa. They were represented by human rights lawyer, Reason Mutimba.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe Cross-border Traders’ Association leader, Killer Zivhu yesterday said he had offered to broker a peace deal with government to end the hostilities that sparked violent protests at Beitbrige Border Post last Friday.

Chitungwiza land invasions

A FRESH wave of urban land invasions has begun in Chitungwiza, with over 2550 desperate home seekers reportedly occupying open spaces while blaming the Zimbabwe government’s failure to provide them with housing.

The worst affected areas are Nyatsime and St Marys. When the invaders were interviewed, they said they were sick of waiting and had lost faith in the housing waiting list.

They land occupiers said they decided to follow the route taken by Zanu PF youths and land barons, who invade stands and build structures, before exerting political pressure on local authorities and the Ministry of Local Government to regularise their developments.

Last week, Zanu PF Harare provincial chairperson, Robert Kahanana distanced himself from the invaders.

 “We further state that all those who continue to involve themselves in such misdeeds will be doing so on their own volition and should not in any way involve or purport to drag the party into such illegal actions and activities,” he said.

“In the given circumstances, the law of Zimbabwe should be left to take its course and be applied accordingly and appropriately without fear or favor in order to redress the situation that has gone out of hand.”

Voice Chinake, MDC-T provincial chairman, was non-committal saying he needed more time to investigate if their members were involved in the alleged invasions. The Police held a meeting with the land invaders on Saturday, however, they refused to budge demanding to be addressed by council officials instead.

 

Minibus Taxi Drivers Clash with Police

Epwoerth 1
Running battles with Police in Epworth

The drivers are protesting against heavy police presence on the roads. There are currently running battles with the police in Epworth leaving hundreds of commuters stranded and without transport.

Police are using tear gas while the drivers are retaliating with missiles and blocking the roads.

One of the vehicles that was smashed. Picture by Tendai Mugabe
One of the vehicles that was smashed. Picture by Tendai Mugabe

Parts of the Harare-Mutare Highway has been blocked. Picture by Felex Share

Parts of the Harare-Mutare Highway has been blocked. Picture by Felex Share

 

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