POLICE in Bulawayo have reportedly foiled a plot by secessionist Mthwakazi Republic Party (MRP) activists to demonstrate against President Emmerson Mnangagwa during the official opening of the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) today.
Southern Eye heard MRP activists were planning to doorstep and embarrass Mnangagwa during his address to register their concerns over his failure to address the 1980s Gukurahundi mass killings.
MRP president Mqondisi Moyo yesterday confirmed that they were summoned and cautioned by police, but denied reports that they intended to protest against the President.
“We did not and we do not have any such plans to demonstrate at the ZITF. In any case, we never publicise our plans. However, it is true that senior police officers called us on Tuesday questioning us on the planned protest,” he said.
“The senior cops in attendance, such as Chief Superintendent Mthokozisi Manzini, said they had gathered information that we wanted to protest. I would like to think it was more of fear on their part that we had such plans. They were saying the protest, if any, will soil the country’s image during such a prestigious event when the country is looking for investors.”
In December last year, MRP activists were arrested and detained at the then Brady Barracks on the outskirts of Bulawayo after they confronted Mnangagwa during a church meeting at ZITF and demanded an explanation of his role in the Gukurahundi massacres.
Another Gukurahundi protest was held in Pretoria, South Africa, where Mnangagwa was addressing Zimbabweans based in the neighbouring country.
The MRP activists claimed Mnangagwa had a hand in the mass killings that left over 20 000 people dead in the Midlands, Bulawayo and Matabeleland provinces.
The activists recently disrupted National Peace and Reconciliation Commission public hearings public hearings in Bulawayo and Matabeleland North, demanding the release of the Chihambakwe Commission of Inquiry report into the Gukurahundi massacres.