Home » Health » ZIMBABWEANS IGNORE STRIKE CALL, ORGANISERS BLAME STATE INTIMIDATION

Zimbabweans on Wednesday largely ignored a strike called by political activists to protest against the government’s handling of growing discontent and economic woes, with organisers accusing state security of intimidating people and businesses.

Public anger is rising in the southern African nation where citizens have in the last two months used social media to organise demonstrations against President Robert Mugabe, including the largest strike since 2007 on July 6.

On Wednesday, businesses, including banks, informal markets and shops were open, ignoring the strike call by social media groups #ThisFlag led by pastor Evan Mawarire and #Tajamuka, whose leader is in custody on public violence charges.

The strike action was called to protest government’s planned introduction of local bank notes in October, acute cash shortages, delays in payment of public sector salaries and a police crackdown that has seen law enforcement agents using teargas, water cannon and batons to break-up protests.

Hardlife Mudzingwa, acting spokesman at #Tajamuka, slang in the Shona language for defiance, accused state security agents of going around the central business district and townships on Tuesday threatening to withdraw licences for businesses if they heeded the strike.

Mudzingwa said three people had been arrested for carrying anti-Mugabe placards in a Harare township.

“Given the little resources that we have, police brutality and threats by state security agents to businesses and around the townships, the shutdown was a success,” said Mudzingwa.

He said #Tajamuka was now preparing for Friday’s march, being planned by opposition parties to press Mugabe and the national election agency to create a level playing field ahead of the 2018 vote, which Mugabe plans to contest aged 94.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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