HON. MANDIPAKA: Mr. Speaker, I am just trying to re-trace where violence started from. He is heard on audio saying, I will quote word for word; “what we want to tell you Mugabe today is that please go peacefully, if you do not go peacefully, we will remove you violently”. This is when we started to experience violent demonstration in this country as a result of this instigation.
HON. ZVIDZAI: Mr. Speaker you have ruled against what the Hon. Member is saying and he must simply stop. In continuing to do what he is doing, he is lying. Violence never started in 1999, there are more than 20 000 people of Zimbabwe who were killed in – [HON. MEMBERS: Inaudible interjections.]- Way before 1999 by Gukurahundi. He must shut up.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, order! I will give you an equal opportunity to respond to what he is saying.
HON. MANDIPAKA: Thank you Hon. Speaker, some of the demonstrations last year were carried out under the umbrella of NERA.
HON. MUKWANGARIWA: On a point of order Hon. Speaker. The Hon Member told the other Hon Member to shut up.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, I did not hear that but if he said so, it is unparliamentary language.
HON ZVIZVAI: I withdraw but dzakutsaku there must stop talking nonsense.
THE TEMPORARY SPEAKER: Order, Hon Zvizvai, you cannot withdraw and then replace the words with more unparliamentary language.
HON. ZVIZVAI: I withdraw.
HON. MANDIPAKA: As Zimbabweans that are peace loving, we cannot be Syria or Lybia. The independent media – you will recall very well that it went on the prowl to portray this country negatively and the results were very clear. Violent sanctions were imposed upon this country. I say they were violent because they have decimated our population in terms of what they should get socially, which could be electricity, water, labour or employment. We were slapped with these violent illegal economic sanctions. Our nation got so polarized yet we remain innocent.
Let me refer the minds of Hon. Members in this House to the Constitution. We are cognizant of the fact that our Constitution establishes the rights of citizens to protest, to demonstrate and express political views. Zimbabweans were made to live in perpetual fear because of unprecedented political attacks and physical attacks on innocent civilians. There was massive looting from ordinary people trying to eke a living. Some of the looting was carried out on informal traders and on some vendors. The wave of violence in that regard at that material time threatened national peace and we are all aware of that.
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