By Mthulisi Mathuthu
SW Radio Africa
23 July 2014
The Zimbabwe Peace Project has reported that while the country has seen a decline in the number of politically motivated attacks incidents of intimidation, assaults, displacement and discrimination have not stopped.
According to the ZPP most incidents recorded during the month of June were based on discrimination due to political intolerance within communities.
In Bindura, the whole of Nekati village was denied access to a ration of food donated by the ZANU PF MP for the area because it was alleged that the area was predominantly MDC-T territory. In Maramba Pfungwe, a widower was denied the opportunity to resister for food aid meant for disadvantaged people because he was an MDC-T supporter.
Similar incidents were also reported in the Mashonaland West areas of Chegutu East and Kadoma as well as in the Masvingo province areas of Chiredzi, Mwenezi and Chivi. It was only in the Midlands area where an MDC-T member told a ZANU PF member to leave the food allocation process, because the donation was not meant for members of the ruling party.
There were also a number of incidents where people were either harassed for attending civil society meetings or had their businesses destroyed by members of the security forces for being associated with the opposition. The report also observed an increase in the number of intra-party fighting within both the MDC-T and ZANU PF ahead of their congresses scheduled for October and December respectively.
These reports come after the arrest and detention of the members of Transform Zimbabwe for campaigning in the rural areas. Harare-based analyst Charles Mangongera said all these incidents show that there is still a lot of work to be done to dismantle the structures of violence which the ZANU PF government has relied on for a long time.
He said civil society should be alert and continue to fight for democracy because ZANU PF violence would not just end on its own. He added: ‘There is a tendency to want to move away from human rights issues because ZANU PF is giving the impression that there is calm in the country, but that is deceptive. ZANU PF cannot just abandon violence and as such the human rights agenda must go on.’
He however said it was ‘depressing’ that the MDC-T, which was supposed to lead the fight against ZANU PF, was failing to rise above the culture of violence.