The rowdy former liberation fighters led by their controversial national leader,Jabulani Sibanda who is camping in the district after resisting a move to chase him away by a defacto-provincial executive leadership, is threatening villagers who fail to attend the rally with untold suffering.
Villagers also said the war ‘vets’ have instructed traditional leaders and village heads to compile registers of their subjects so that they will mark those who will be absent and present when Mujuru addresses her rally.
“We are being intimidated and threatened by these rogue liberation fighters who are moving house by house. They visited my homestead in the early hours …and demanded my presence at the rally saying failure to do so will see surmount to physical discipline, “ said Edmore Gwasengwa of Chisase village.
He however expressed concern over the continued violation of their human rights as they are entitled to a political party to support and subsequently attend its rallies.
“This is violation of our rights, how could will be forced to attend a rally by some members of a political party I do not subscribe to. I have to go there for the sake of protecting my life and my family, “he said.
The war veterans are allegedly telling the villagers that those who snub Mujuru rally will be labelled MDCT supporters and will be punished for contributing to their President Robert Mugabe’s loss in 2008 March general elections when he was thrashed by the then opposition leader, Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
Sarudzai Janganidzwa said she was instructed to come with all her family including children.
“They said if I do not attend the rally it means that I will be an MDCT supporter so they will beat me for voting against Zanu (PF) in 2008,’’ she said.
Masvingo Provincial Information office confirmed the rally but denied claims of threatening villagers to attend while Zanu (PF) chairman, Lovemore Matuke declined to comment.