Heal Zimbabwe Trust condemns political violence that rocked Hopley Farm between ZANU PF and MDC-T activists over a political rally venue. On 1 November 2015, ZANU PF and MDC-T supporters engaged in a fierce battle where over 30 people were injured, including a seven year old child and a pregnant woman. This recent violence is an indication of persisting political intolerance and poor observation of fundamental human rights that promote freedom of association and assembly.
HZT notes with concern that ZANU PF and MDC-T activists clashed over a political rally space in Hopley Farm. The MDC-T purportedly booked an open ground in Hopley Farm to hold a political rally with acknowledgement from the Police. However, ZANU PF activists allegedly claimed to have booked the same space for their meeting. They also claimed that Hopley was a ZANU PF stronghold which the opposition should respect.
Heal Zimbabwe is concerned by such acts of violence that continue to occur without any clear interventions by relevant authorities to stop the menace. These acts of violence result in preventable loss of lives as well as an accumulation in the number of victims of politically motivated violations. Therefore, we urge political parties to desist from violence and to develop a culture of tolerance and celebrate diversity within their structures. Political tolerance fosters a culture of peaceful co-existence which is necessary for attaining social cohesion in the county. It is also important for political parties to continue preaching the message of peace because it is every person’s responsibility to uphold peace in their community so that it transcends from grassroots to the national level.