UPDATED: 6 DIE IN HARARE VIOLENCE
2 August 2018
. . . Biti still wanted by Police
. . . Hooligans loot, burn vehicles
THE Zimbabwe Republic Police today confirmed the deaths of six people after MDC-inspired youths rocked violence in Harare’s CBD.
The police and the army were yesterday forced to intervene after rowdy MDC followers started burning cars, stoning stores and looting vendors’ wares in protests against their party’s losses in the harmonized elections.
Chief police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said the deaths were regrettable and warned the instigators of the violence that the long arm of the law will catch up with them.
Below is an except of her statement . . .
“The Zimbabwe Republic Police would like to confirm the deaths of three (now six) people during these riots and melee which occured in harare’s Central Business District.
We as the ZRP wish to express our sincere and deep condolonces to the bereaved familes. The ZRP is currently investigating the circumstances sorrounding the deaths of these three people and the injury of other people as well.
In the meantime the deceased have not yet been identified and we appeal to members of the public to also proceed to Parirenyatwa Groyup of Hospitals and assist in the identification of the deceased.
As investigations continue, we urge the public to remain calm and peaceful and never to be coerced and persuaded into engaging in acts of violence.
The ZRP is also currently ceased with viewing video footage of political party leaders who continue to urge members of the public to engage in violence.
We want to make it clear that inciting violence is contrary to the law and these people will be arrested. The ZRP would like therefore to condemn in the strongest terms acts of hooliganism and vandalism that occured in the Harare CBD.
All efforts to maintain peace, law and order have been marred by ugly scenes of violence and surely the loss of life under any circumstances is not acceptable.
Sanctity of human life is very important and that should be very clear to all those instigaters of violence,“ she said.
Senior Ass Comm Charamba added that the ZRP were keen to interview MDC leaders Tendai Biti and Happy Chidziva in connection with the disturbances.
“We are keen to interview Mr Tendai Biti and Happi(son) Chidziva of the MDC Alliance. We are inviting them to come to CID Law and Order in Harare. They are invited so that they can assist with investigations,” she said.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba also urged members of the public to refrain from committing acts of violence.
“We are urging members of the public to refrain from committing acts of violence. We want to inform the nation that the Commissioner General of Police has invoked the provisions of Section 37 (1) of the Public Order and Security Act Chapter 11.17 and approached the Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage to request for the assistance of the Defence Forces for the suppression of the commotion and disturbances in Harare Central Business District,” she said.
Snr Asst Comm Charamba added, “The ZDF, however, remain under the command and supervision of the Commissioner General of Police. This development has been necessitated by the fact that the degree of disturbances of law and order have reached a magnitude where our regular police officers, as well as our reserve members, have been unable to cope with this situation. We are urging members of the public to remain calm, refrain from violence and also respect the rule of law in the country.
“We will update you as the events unfold but we want to warn in no uncertain terms that those who are instigating violence should stop.”
. . . Hooligans loot, burn vehicles
FIVE vehicles were burnt and goods stolen from parked cars near Fourth Street bus terminus yesterday when suspected MDC protestors ran amok challenging the election results.
The hooligans were part of people who were protesting against elections results that were underway.
“Pwanya tione zvirimo kana iriyemupurisa kanaye ZANU PF tipe moto tipise,” they were heard saying as they broke vehicles, setting some on fire.
One of the vendors pleaded with the hooligans as they took her goods and set her table on fire accusing her of not joining others in the protest march.
Police moved swiftly and controlled the situation by throwing tear gas and water but most vehicles had been broken into and some were in flames.
Shop owners were forced to close shops as the hooligans marched in streets corridors holding iron bars and sticks threatening to loot.
Media personnel were threatened and some marched to Herald House and stoned the building.
Protestors argue that the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission is biased although they were still to announce the presidential winner.