ZANU-PF Secretary for Youth Affairs Cde Pupurai Togarepi (54) yesterday urged youths to defend the country’s revolution by voting for the ruling party in the July 30 polls.
Addressing hundreds of youths during Zanu-PF’s Southern Region Youth Convention in Nyamandlovu yesterday, Cde Togarepi said the national convention, which will be held on July 27, will attract thousands of youths from the country’s 10 provinces.
“We are looking forward to hold another huge convention in Harare before the harmonised elections where we hope all the youths will attend to show their solidarity with the party President and First Secretary. As Zanu-PF we are busy campaigning and telling our people that they should vote for President Mnangagwa yet some are busy staging demonstrations. Demonstrations are just counter-productive and let’s all go and vote on July 30 to ensure a resounding victory for Zanu-PF. Before we do so, our youth league decided to sit down and organise regional youth conventions,” he said.
“On Friday next week, we want you all in Harare so that we convene and display our strength in numbers. We want people to go to the polls knowing that Zanu PF has a huge following. We are going to defend this revolution with peace, development and unity.”
Cde Togarepi urged youths to rally behind Zanu-PF, saying opposition parties did not have the interests of the people at heart.
“The opposition parties have already checked out and they already know the position of the electorate and they are now afraid of losing the elections. They are now attacking the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec),” he said.
Cde Togarepi urged Zanu-PF supporters to desist from pre and post-election violence.
“We don’t want to be found on the wrong side of the law. Even if they (members of the opposition parties) provoke you don’t be tempted. Let us go to the booth and vote for President Mnangagwa, our MPs and councillors. They will come to you, say may be at a beer garden and insult you so that you retaliate and thereafter claim acts of violence to discredit our elections,” he said.
Cde Togarepi said the President, in his wisdom, decided to invite observers from different countries to come and observe the country’s polls.
He said the MDC Alliance, which has been making unnecessary demands to Zec, will not stop the elections from going ahead.
“It is not the duty of Zanu- PF to campaign on behalf of the opposition. No one should block us from voting on July 30. There are some who are saying if their demands are not met by Zec, they will prevent people from voting. They are joking because the constitution says when elections are due we are going to vote for our leaders. No one can stop us and we are going ahead,” he said.
Cde Togarepi said Zanu-PF is poised for a resounding victory in the elections because of its huge following.
“As Zanu-PF we are aware of political parties with two or three people and just like football they will be able to score one of two goals, but our revolutionary party will score many goals because we have more numbers than theirs. It is clear that they will lose elections,” he said.
Cde Togarepi said the Zanu-PF Youth League leadership has an obligation to ensure that youths are economically empowered.
“Our President launched the Youth Empowerment Bank to fund various projects for our youths. The Government under the leadership of President Mnangagwa through the Youth Empowerment Bank will therefore assist you to venture into businesses of your choice. As Zanu-PF Youth League we will work with our provincial chairpersons to ensure that youths are economically empowered. Those involved in small scale mining the Government has set aside $100 million so that you acquire the equipment,” he said.
Cde Togarepi said youths should play a leading role in safeguarding the future of the country. Yesterday’s Southern Region Youth Convention covering Bulawayo, Midlands and the two Matabeleland provinces followed a recently highly subscribed youth rally addressed by President Mnangagwa in Gweru.