Zanu-PF’s tour de force

Hundreds of thousands of zanu-pf supporters who gathered for the Million-Man March in Harare yesterday in a show of force to celebrate President Mugabe's legacy and affirm their support for his candidature for the 2018 harmonised elections

Hundreds of thousands of zanu-pf supporters who gathered for the Million-Man March in Harare yesterday in a show of force to celebrate President Mugabe’s legacy and affirm their support for his candidature for the 2018 harmonised elections

Herald Reporters
THE Robert Gabriel Mugabe Square lived up to its billing yesterday when hundreds of thousands of Zanu-PF supporters gathered there in a show of force to celebrate President Mugabe’s legacy and affirm their support for his candidature for the 2018 harmonised elections.

The gathering, which coincided with Africa Day, was also in honour of President Mugabe’s tenure as African Union chairman that saw the continental body launch a 50-year development plan, Agenda 2063 which, just like the country’s own economic blueprint Zim-Asset, advocates judicious exploitation of the continent’s God-given resources through value-addition and beneficiation.

Under President Mugabe’s tenure, the African Union, moved its trajectory firmly on the path of economic independence and speaker after speaker yesterday expressed pride at the way President Mugabe had steered the continental ship.

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The square was a hive of activity as early as 7am as people streamed in from several designated Million-Man March venues with buses arriving from various provinces to celebrate the legacy of a man who has become synonymous with plaudits wherever he goes in the developing world.

President Mugabe is the only incumbent leader in Africa today cut from the same cloth that gave Africa the iconic leaders who formed the Organisation of African Unity in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on May 25, 1963. Scores of buses, haulage trucks and other vehicles carrying delegates from Midlands and Matabeleland provinces arrived at the National Sports Stadium as early as 7am and were addressed by their respective youth chairpersons.

Upon arrival, the youths burst into songs and toyi-toyed around the stadium chanting slogans and praising President Mugabe.

The youths started marching to Robert Mugabe Square at around 10:30am after being given food and event regalia.

Harare province was gathered at Raylton Sports Club and buses started arriving at the assembly point at around 8am.

Hundreds of thousands of people were gathered at the venue by 10am.

Zanu-PF members broke into singing and dancing while others were doing press ups celebrating the visionary leadership of President Mugabe.

The march started around 10:15am as the crowd marched along Jason Moyo Avenue to the main venue at the Robert Mugabe Square.

Representatives of Masvingo province and part of Mashonaland East province met at Rufaro Stadium at around 8am in their numbers with the figures swelling as time progressed.

The march from Rufaro Stadium commenced at about 10:30am as the people headed towards the venue.

Manicaland and the bulk of party members from Mashonaland East had filled the East 24 perimeter to capacity by 9:30am and they had parking challenges as most vehicles were almost blocking Samora Machel Avenue.

Placards with inscriptions that showered accolades on President Mugabe were on display.

The Zanu-PF Youth League expressed satisfaction with the huge turnout.

The Youth League secretary for finance Cde Tongai Kasukuwere said the crowd exceeded their expectations.

“With the little resources, we managed to pull out a lot of people. We used about $100 000 for the success of this event and this includes, tents hire, chairs, toilets etc. Movement of the people from the provinces was self funding. Some came in lorries and even tractors. Everyone can see that President Mugabe is the darling of the nation. We now need to work on the economy and not focus on trivial issues.

“The idea of the One Man Million March was to celebrate the legacy of President Mugabe. We thought, him being an African icon and former chairperson of the African Union and Sadc, Africa Day was the best day to celebrate his legacy from where he has taken us before independence, through independence, land reform, indigenisation and just the emancipation of the African people.

“This is what we are celebrating,” he said.

Dangamvura-Chikanga legislator Cde Esau Mupfumi who was part of the organising team in Manicaland said he was overwhelmed by the massive turnout.

“It is evident that Zimbabwe has heeded our call. All provinces are here. It is now One Million Man plus march. People have shown their willingness to rally behind their leader President Mugabe. He is the only centre of power.”

“This event is special not only to Zimbabwe but to Africa as a whole. President Mugabe has ruled. He has shown light in Africa. People have come in numbers. We can only urge them to continue rallying behind our visionary leader,” he said.

A London based supporter of President Mugabe who travelled for the event, Ms Cheryl Svosve said she was elated to finally meet her icon.

“I travelled all the way from London because this is a really iconic moment in history. It is not every day that you get to meet the President and hear what he has to say. I really wanted to take this opportunity to come here and experience the One Man Million March with my people,” she said.

Sport and Recreation Minister and Mberengwa East legislator Cde Makhosini Hlongwane said the event was historical.

“This is an epochal event in terms of the history of the party and the history of the youths in the country. The youths have finally been able to turn the important exuberant and ebullient energy they have into support not just for our iconic leader, President Mugabe but the iconic figure for the entire continent. So this is not a small thing”

“It is an important celebration that speaks to the importance of this great founding father of Zimbabwe, this great founding father of Africa and celebrating the works that he has done over many years of his life,” he said.

Queen of Grace Zim-Asset Trust secretary general Cde Ephraim Chizola said the vendors and other small entrepreneurs he represented were happy and content with the leadership of President Mugabe.

Cde Chizola said vendors had come in huge numbers from all the 10 provinces to show their support for the President.

“As vendors and small entrepreneurs, we pledge our support to President Mugabe and we will never leave him or the ruling party. He has empowered us economically and today we are all businesspeople, running our own entities,” he said.

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  • thing

    This crowd numbers in the hundreds of thousands – imagine a crowd 10 times bigger and you have 2 million people. That is the number of jobs the president promised at the last.

    Rather than spending $2mn, can you imagine how much the national economy would have benefited had these marchers been gainfully employed and put in an honest days work instead?

  • Tinovaziva

    More like tour dear bootlickers and frightened people

    • much in a muhombe

      Chabuda hapana , not even crumbs from the high table

    • Philosophy.

      And after the march???
      Now that the march is over, what next???
      Where exactly is the march leading too???
      Some political strategies are so week for lack of meaningful purpose.
      How can a person just march without an AIM??
      WHO is Mugabe’s enemy that you wanted to expose??? If the enemy is supposed to be Mnangagwa THEN that march is like hitting feasts in the air. Kurova mhepo.
      Because the joke of it; Mnangangwa marched too.
      So..where is Mugabe’s enemy? Who is that enemy???

  • Dr Dotito

    There is a difference between hundreds of thousands and tens of thousands. Some exaggeration can be too obvious.

    • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

      Whatever the actual numbers were,the bottom line is that ZANU PF still has significant support compared to the split ridden opposition lot. For example, the hesitant Mujuru outfit has yet to show if it has any muscle at all. May be they can start a rally at your doorstep,right at Dotito Growth Point , for a political acid test! There you are Dr Dotito! The proverbial political ball is in your court!

      • Steve

        If you say you’re going to attract 1 million people and you don’t, you have failed! If you say you’re going to create 2.2 million jobs and you don’t you’ve failed! Did I just hear someone say ‘specialists in failure’? Lol

    • Toverengwa

      Estimating crowd numbers is always controversial, especially when trying to score political points. If we consider the 18 Hectare area covered by Freedom Square or Robert Mugabe Square depending on which side of the political divide you stand, well known methods based on photos and videos to estimate average crowd density, knowing this falls off rapidly towards the outer edges, can be applied to give fairly accurate estimates.
      For example using the common Jacobs method and seeing the crowd was fluid with many spaces allowing for free movement seen by people walking around all over the place and sitting down on the ground, we know the grounds were far from full. 18 hectares represents approximately 1 938 000 square feet, and allowing an average of 10 square feet of space per individual if evenly spaced over the whole area which wasn’t fully used, would give an absolute maximum crowd of 193 800. By being very generous estimates place numbers at 60 000 and probably far less, anyway much less than the 1 000 000 hoped for.

    • Butholezwe

      Some new photos available on other media taken from much higher up and not close to the bigwigs, show the grounds were virtually empty over 70% of the surface. I think numbers will have to be seriously downgraded and give impressions of less than those who attended the War Vet meeting last month. Apparently Zanu-PF Youth League have a lot to learn about discipline and organising effective rallies from their elders in the ZNLWVA.

  • ngwena

    nothing to celebrate where are the 2,2 million jobs

  • Judas Iscariot

    This is what i have learnt today
    1 The President is irreplaceable.
    2 It’s treasonous to support any other aspiring presidential candidate.
    3 Factionalism poses a far greater danger to our economy than corruption.
    4 It’s wrong for ministers to hold meetings at expensive resorts within our borders,but they can vacation at even much more expensive resorts outside the country.
    5 After the million man march,the youth are expecting taxpayers to keep giving them free farming imputs.
    6 The youth admitted,not everybody is born to be a farmer,and that we have people with large farms they’re underutilizing
    7 The need to fight corruption by our gov’t officials.
    What i didn’t learn is what the youth are taking back home after the march.

    • bodo_kwete

      Just those things you register are enough for a THINKING person to contemplate about forming a new political party to counter this rotten system.

  • Chatambudza

    Why can’t Herald reporters provide correct information about the OAU and AU in the first place instead of attempting misdirection and implying misinformation?
    During the 1963 OAU inauguration on 25 May 1963, Zimbabwe (Southern Rhodesia at the time) was represented by ZAPU Joshua Nkomo, who was accompanied by Joseph Bruno Msika and James Robert Dambaza Chikerema. Zanu didn’t exist yet until 8 August 1963, two months and two weeks after the historic Addis Ababa conference. Was Robert Mugabe even invited?
    And we don’t see why Mugabe’s one year tenure as AU chair in 2015 is associated with responsibility for Agenda 2063, which was the result of long planned hard work by others. To quote from the AU website:-
    “The vision of Agenda 2063 was launched under the leadership of H.E Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, First Female Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC) since the creation of the OAU now the AU.”
    “In 2013 during the OAU Golden Jubilee, the African leaders adopted the 50th Anniversary Solemn Declaration in which they decided to develop a Continental Agenda 2063 with clear priority areas to be realized in the next fifty years through a people-driven process.”

    • Kachasu

      No arguments there, facts as they are. Someone is trying to rewrite history

  • Brian Richards

    how about we change the title to Forced Zanu PF March

  • Roy Moyo

    If the idea was to celebrate an African icon, why then was this made a political party event? It was supposed to be a continental event sponsored by the AU instead of confiscating school buses to cut costs.

    • Danisa Tshawe

      Confiscating is probably a wrong word to use.

      Were they any school kids attending classes yesterday?

      I am not a fan of Zanu but being blind to your enemies strength can only harm you.

  • Fred Muchena

    what next, now that the much was ‘successful’

  • Bornwero

    Asi chabuda hapana

  • Tendekayi.TE

    We don’t need Mangudya to provide INSIGHTS on the cash crisis. We need Mangudya to provide SOLUTIONS to the cash crisis. We are far too educated to be discussing problems. We are tired of being told about our problems. We LIVE in problems. SOLUTIONS, gentlemen.

  • Gary WekuZviyambe

    The one minion march. ZANU-PF minions marching for tshirts

  • muongorori

    Guys, hate him or like him, mdhara Bob ane power kugrassroots and until we accept that tobva kumacacoons edu tonopinda mugrassroots macho, tova understenda, zvose zvichangoperera mukushoropodza tiri painternate chete pasina kwazvinoenda. Masupporters eZanu Pf dont want anything from the govenment, they dont have anything but they expect nothing from the govenment, ndoo pane challenge ipapo. They dont mind suffering vaakuedza kudzokera back to Mzarabani after the march. They are so selfless.

    • bodo_kwete

      ???????????? Those mzarabani people got a bun, drink and free ride into town for the day. They are content with that kkkk

    • Blackwave

      Selfless my foot!!!

  • Tozvireva

    This gathering was a waste of time!!! It was a bootlicking gathering. Instead of the president telling people how he intends to solve the country’s problems he goes on the usual telling us about history we all know. What we want to know are the solutions to the country’s problems!!! Spouting history will not solve cash shortages, will not create employment, will not create productive farmers and will not end endemic corruption. Beacuse of all these false praises the president thinks he is doing a good job whereas he is just rubbish at providing solutions.

    • bodo_kwete

      Like Hitler and Goebels, Mugabe likes public oratory. Other than that, he doesn’t have much to offer. The younger Mugabe might have been a bit different but this post-independence Mugabe is a distaster for all of us.

  • Mushonja

    last paragraph: ‘as vendors and small entrepreneurs, we pledge our support… never leave him or the ruling party’.
    No offence but that means mucharamba muri mavendor and SMALL entrepreneurs.

  • kutototo

    Congratulations Zanu PF, congratulations the youth for a highly successful well attended march …. but where are the 2.2 million jobs and any ideas on when the cash crisis will be over.

  • ashburton grove

    cant wait for Nate manheru to spin this
    after he dismissed mdc numbers for their demo

  • Zvihutazvashe

    As usual the politics of diversion are at work. The so called million man march is yet another ploy to divert the masses’ attention from the current cash crisis, the Zimra and Zpc scandals to name but a few. Why would a nation in crisis such as ours spend energy and resources on a useless event such as this to deify a man responsible for all the problems we are facing? One thing Zanoids do not understand is that the president and his entire cabinet are public servants and nothing more. Instead of them serving the people who elected them, they are being heroworshipped for ruining the economy and making the country a police state. If these youths represent our future as a country then god help us all. Mugabe is not god and there is nothing special that he has done. What little he achieved pre and post independence, he has drastically reversed with his repression and continued stranglehold on the reins of power. Its really unbelieveable that the whole Zanu machinery is serious about giving him yet another term in office! What a brainwashed lot!!

    • petros

      Like them, or hate them but you can’t ignore them. Yesterday Harare was under siege North, East, South, West marchers descended in Harare. Whether they got history lesson or achieved nothing does not matter because it was them who attended not us who observed that mattered.

  • loonex

    Not even ONE tenth of a million even bothered. The Herald just cannot sink much deeper into the dustbin.

  • Idiot

    And then?

  • kudakwashe nyome

    The Land & Economy are fair,legitimate aspirations & rights of the Black People in Africa & Zimbabwe in particular.They say the Zim gvt is characterized by intimidation & violence, bt history & everyone knows whos the most intimidating & violent men in the world(slavery & colonialism).The truth is that Zim is under surge by Imperialist becoz if Zim becomes a success story then all other African countries will follow suite.The West are envy of a Total Black State in Africa & will make sure that it does not become a reality!!!!iCHO

  • wenjere

    A Tour da Farce sound more like it. Herald headlines!