Govt probes role of third force

Source: Govt probes role of third force | The Herald July 4, 2016

Government is investigating the extent to which external parties were involved in the violent protests that rocked Beitbridge town last Friday leaving property worth hundreds of thousands of dollars either burnt or vandalised by hooligans, State Security Minister Kembo Mohadi said last night. Minister Mohadi, however, said it was too early to release details.“We are still investigating the matter and from the way the demonstrations were carried out, it points to the hand of a third party.

“The way they carried out the operations is unlike Zimbabweans. Our people are known for holding peaceful demonstrations rather than vandalising properties or burning tyres.”

The hooligans blocked roads with stones and other objects as well as burning tyres and also set on fire a Zimbabwe Revenue Authority state warehouse, destroying property worth hundreds of thousands of dollars including 35 vehicles that had been forfeited by the revenue authority.

The mob also looted shops in the town and damaged some of them and stoned private vehicles and houses. Another group also blocked traffic on the South African side of the border for six hours. These included businessmen in that country and residents from the neighbouring town of Musina.

Some of the characters under the spotlight were those seen wearing T-shirts with the Hashtag “Tajamuka”, while others had professionally printed banners denouncing the Government over the new import laws. Of late such T-shirts have become a common feature during demonstrations staged by opposition political parties.

It is also understood the South African traders living near the border with Zimbabwe have started feeling the heat over the introduction of the new regulations. At least 60 percent of them sell the restricted goods, raising speculation that they were also fuelling demonstrations in Zimbabwe. Minister Mohadi said several arrests of the proponents of the violence had been made though some of the ringleaders were still at large.

He said they were still pursuing those implicated for masterminding the chaos and would be accounted for soon. He said that the situation was still calm because of the strong visibility of security forces around the town.

“For now the situation is calm. We haven’t received any new reports of untoward behaviour. Furthermore, we are hearing that there are other people in South Africa who are mobilising to close that side of the border again,” said the minister. He said was yet to engage his counterpart in South Africa over the matter.

Sources close to investigations said yesterday that three more suspects had been arrested bringing to 74 the number of people who have been arrested in connection with the mayhem around the border town.

Industry and Trade Minister Mike Bimha said on Saturday that restrictions on selected goods under the new import regulations would not be reversed because the policy saved the country’s best interests and that it was introduced after wide consultations.

He said the Government would not deviate from engineering its economic revival agenda and would press ahead with the limited restrictions. The minister said the SI did not bar people from importing a few products for personal consumption. Some of the listed goods include food items, building material, furniture, toiletries and cooking oil among other things.

Meanwhile, it was business as usual at Roadport as buses were ferrying passengers to South Africa. Passengers and bus drivers who had just arrived from the neighbouring South Africa, confirmed that things were almost back to normal at the border.

One driver identified as Kanhongo attested that travelling to South Africa was now safe and chided social media for exaggerating events, creating panic. “I would not risk my life and that of the passengers by driving to a place I know is not safe. Some of these rumours circulating on social media are not a true representation of what is happening.”


  • comment-avatar
    Mukanya 6 years ago

    Its all Zanu PF’s fantasies!!!

  • comment-avatar
    Joe Cool 6 years ago

    Too dumb to get the simple message that Zimbo’s are pissed off and have had about enough of them.

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    Tinomunamataishe 6 years ago

    “The way they carried out the operations is unlike Zimbabweans. Our people are known for holding peaceful demonstrations rather than vandalising properties or burning tyres.” – so Zimbabweans should just keep quiet and do nothing.

    Are even demonstrations allowed in Zimbabwe?

    A time is coming or probably has now come when people have nothing to lose any more and they will do whatever they can to get their message across.

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    harper 6 years ago

    Third force? Fifth Column? Bogey Man? All state inventions to try to divert the blame and provide an excuse for State Violence. At most Super ZAPU numbered 80 men, never many inside Zimbabwe at any one time but ZANU used it as an excuse to murder 20 000 innocents.

  • comment-avatar

    It is not fair for ZANU to arrest people and force them to buy expensive goods. Let there be free competition. You don’t kill people to force them to support ZANU companies. Buying foreign is a way of survival. Buying local is unaffordable to many save for the fat cats in the gravy train. Why are people forcefully compelled on how they manage their personal groceries? Where is the pay for civil servants? Where are the roads? Where are the graduates? Where are the jobs? Where is industry? Where are those loyal to ZANU? Those can be told at rallies to buy from their ZANU colleagues. Leave the majority alone. You can cheat in an election but the economy is a different ball game. Don’t kill and /or arrest people for disagreement with unreasonable policies. Nothing is criminal at all in resisting oppression. Do the honourable thing! Go! Go! Go! We need to start now to repair the damage caused by ZANU. The sooner the better.

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    Michael 6 years ago

    May I ask a simple question about Zimbabweans in the diaspora – if the Zimbabweans working outside Zimbabwe and earning local currency not allowed to buy prohibited items in SA for sending to their families and will such goods be confiscated in Zimbabwe? They apparently cannot send money through official channels too – since the families struggle to draw money from their bank accounts?

    The dictatorship has stolen what was left in Zimbabwe and is now turning against Zimbabweans and especially the poor and powerless in general. No wonder there are disturbances.

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    Joe Cool 6 years ago

    Marie Antoinette found out the hard way that the people are not powerless when they choose not to be. What is needed now is for no Zimbabwean to sit back and expect others to carry the struggle for them. In the face of concerted protests the ZRP and the ZNA will soon opt to support the people which is, in reality, themselves.