By Nomalanga Moyo
SW Radio Africa
08 July 2014
ZANU PF youths closed a furniture market in Glen View in a bid to smoke out and punish traders who did not attend the burial of party official Stanley Sakupwanya at the National Heroes Acre on Sunday.
A report in the NewsDay newspaper said the youths positioned themselves at the entrance to the furniture complex and only allowed traders who had attended the burial to enter.
Those who attended the burial ceremony were being identified by the stamps put on their hands when they boarded the hired bus to the stadium on Sunday.
Harare-based SW Radio Africa correspondent Simon Muchemwa said similar disturbances were experienced at Mupedzanhamo home industries in Mbare. In this case however, police intervened.
“The stallholders are generally viewed as beneficiaries of the ZANU PF empowerment scheme and so they were now being punished for what the youths viewed as a snub to the party following the poor attendance of Sunday’s burial,” Muchemwa said.
Muchemwa blamed ZANU PF’s patronage system which he said was being used as a form of blackmail. “The ZANU PF government fails to see beyond party lines and expects anyone who benefits from what should be non-partisan national projects to toe the party line.
“Unless someone does that and attends all party events, chants the party’s slogans, they are treated as an enemy and dispossessed.
“With unemployment standing at above 90%, the informal sector to which these traders belong is what is driving what remains of the economy and disrupting activities like this in the name of the party is self-defeating for ZANU PF,” said Muchemwa.
He added that Harare residents were not shocked by the actions of the youths which he said reflected the anarchy that is ZANU PF rule.
“They are a law unto themselves and many of them are members of the party’s militia wing Chipangano that have over the years terrorised opposition MDC supporters at will.
“A few weeks ago they destroyed a religious sect shrine which they have since taken over, with the assistance of the police. These youths are untouchable, and unfortunately it is ordinary Zimbabweans who suffer the consequences of their lawlessness,” Muchemwa added.