MDC 'won't stop people from protesting', Chamisa says as Zim economy collapses

2018-10-10 10:17
Nelson Chamisa (File: AFP)

Nelson Chamisa (File: AFP)

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Zimbabwean opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) leader, Nelson Chamisa, has reportedly said that his party "will not stop people from exercising their constitutional right to protest against the collapse of the economy".

According to News Day, Chamisa said this while addressing MDC parliamentarians in Harare on Tuesday.

"We have noted the total collapse of the economy in the hands of the Zanu-PF government and president Nelson Chamisa, through engagements with the people, had seen it reasonable to allow the people to express themselves through protests," MDC Alliance spokesperson Jacob Mafume was quoted as saying.

This came as Zimbabwe’s largest trade union called for protests on Thursday, as the country’s economic crisis worsened.

But police said they would halt any demonstrations in Harare due to a cholera outbreak, an AFP report said.

New lows

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) said the strike was triggered by sharp price hikes, a new tax on electronic transactions and daily shortages ranging from fuel to drugs.

"We are going to approach the courts. We do not think the police have a legal basis (for any ban)," ZCTU president Peter Mutasa said on Tuesday.

"They are just trying to intimidate people into not joining the march," he said, adding he would still call for a national shutdown.

Zimbabwe's moribund economy has hit new lows in recent days with shops struggling to stock shelves, prices of goods such as cooking oil rising rapidly due to panic buying and long queues outside petrol stations.

A two-cents tax for every dollar of electronic payments was introduced last week as President Emmerson Mnangagwa seeks to revive the debt-ridden economy.

The local "bond note" currency, which in theory has the same value as the US dollar, has been in freefall in recent weeks, raising fears of a return to the hyperinflation that wrecked national finances in 2009.

Read more on:    zctu  |  mdc  |  zanu-pf  |  nelson chamisa  |  zimbabwe  |  southern africa
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