FORMER President Robert Mugabe could have had a hand in the violence that rocked Harare on Wednesday, where soldiers allegedly opened fire on opposition protestors and killed six and injuring several others, war veterans have claimed.
Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) spokesperson Douglas Mahiya claimed yesterday that Mugabe could have funded the protests to cause anarchy in the country.
“We note that during the campaign the MDC Alliance presidential candidate Advocate Nelson Chamisa already indicated that he would organise mass action if he lost. We wonder why he thought he would not lose elections against a party that had done its homework. Zanu PF had done its homework,” Mahiya said.
“The alliance forged between bitter Advocate Chamisa and bitter former President Robert Mugabe is worrying as we feel it is a recipe for violence,” he said.
“We cannot rule out the involvement of Selous Scouts in the protests. Up until Mugabe’s latest emergence on the political scene, there was no violence. It seems to us that the objective is to reverse the gains of the new dispensation and block any other candidate other than Chamisa who would advance the Mugabe agenda.”
While Mahiya emotionally denied war veterans have in the past been involved in violence, former Education minister Fay Chung admitted that the former fighters were in some instances involved in political skirmishes.
“War veterans were used to attack political rivals through violence and killing. I think we need to have accountability around that,” Chung, a liberation war fighter, said.
Mahiya said Mugabe had squandered his legacy and should not be considered for national hero status.
“There was need for this nation to continue to respect the former President, but surely with what we he has done, he will not go to the National Heroes Acre because he has destroyed his legacy. He has deceived the people of Zimbabwe,” he said.
He, however, condemned the military’s use of live ammunition to disperse the protesters.
“It is unfortunate that someone initiated an exercise that ended up with people dying. We are not justifying anything. They will be dealt with, it will be investigated. Killing people is wrong,” Mahiya said.