Political parties take peace pledge
Wallace Ruzvidzo Zimpapers Elections Desk
POLITICAL parties contesting in the August 23 harmonised elections have pledged to safeguard the peace and tranquillity prevailing in the country during this electoral cycle.
To this effect, the parties yesterday signed a Peace Pledge at the instigation of the Zimbabwe Heads of Christian Denominations (ZHCD).
The Second Republic, under President Mnangagwa, has continued to maintain zero-tolerance to all forms of political violence, before, during, and after the polls.
Speaking after signing their pledge, Zanu PF deputy secretary for Legal Affairs Cde Fortune Chasi said it was important that all political players conduct themselves in a peaceful manner as there was life after the polls.
He said the ruling party would never encourage violence hence all its members or supporters who would not adhere to the directive would face the wrath of the law.
“Today we signed the pledge as Zanu PF that we are committed to peaceful elections and peaceful campaigning.
“Under the Second Republic, we have always been a peaceful party and we have always preached the message. Those who do not listen to our directive should be thoroughly dealt with, we expect all members of our party to listen to the directive and employ peace in all they do,” he said.
Turning to the tragic loss of life that happened in Glen View 7 on Thursday, Cde Chasi said the ruling party was non-tolerant to all forms of violence.
“Firstly, we pass our condolences as a party and as Zimbabweans because we do not smile at the loss of life.
“We are imploring the police to fully investigate the case and make sure perpetrators face the full wrath of the law regardless of which political party they belong to.
“As a party, we will not interfere with police investigations but if it turns out that they are from our party then as a party we will also enforce disciplinary measures,” he said.
MDC chief whip Paurina Mpariwa said the opposition political outfit would champion and continue to preach peace.
“As the MDC this is a great occasion and I hope and trust it will take us far because we have been talking of peace and harmony among political parties.
“We need to be accommodative of each other regardless of our political jackets and I believe that today marks a new era and as MDC we will walk the talk, we salute peace and we salute God.
“After all we are all relatives regardless of the different political parties we are members of,” she said.
CCC’s secretary for elections Councillor Ian Makoni said they would campaign peacefully and propagate peace during the remainder of the electoral period.
“The bigger prize is that these elections are held in a peaceful manner and as the CCC, in every opportunity to urge and encourage peace you will always find us there,” he said.
UZA president Elisabeth Valerio weighed in saying her party had signed the pledge as peaceful campaigning was the only way to go.
“Today is an important day for us and it was a chance for us as political parties to really focus on the nation and the peacefulness that is required for us to effectively participate in this election,” she said.
In his keynote address, the president of the Zimbabwe Heads of Christian Denominations, Bishop Never Muparutsa, implored political players to safeguard the current peaceful political environment.
Speaking on behalf of ZRP Commissioner-General Godwin Matanga, ZRP’s Chaplin General Assistant Commissioner Jeremiah Doyce, urged the political parties to take the peace pledge seriously.