Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

Commercial Farmers' Union of Zimbabwe

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Soldiers take charge of inputs scheme

Soldiers take charge of inputs scheme

The army has taken over the distribution of farm inputs in parts of 
Manicaland province under a controversial operation that sees the security 
forces working with Zanu (PF) and traditional chiefs to disenfranchise known 
MDC-T supporters in the region, The Zimbabwean learnt this week.
by Staff Reporter

The operation, code named “Operation Zunde Ramambo” and being done through 
the traditional chiefs, has seen soldiers from the Three Brigade based in 
Mutare being deployed to various parts of the province to spearhead the Zanu 
(PF) campaign strategy under the guise of leading an exercise to improve 
food security.

The soldiers are openly campaigning for President Robert Mugabe, telling the 
villagers they would be killed if they do not vote for Zanu (PF) in polls 
likely to take place by March 2013.

Senior MDC-T officials in the province told The Zimbabwean this week that 
the soldiers have instructed traditional leaders in areas such as Chipinge, 
Chimanimani and Nyanga to compile names of their subjects who are known 
MDC-T supporters.

The listed MDC-T supporters are being denied free seeds and fertiliser which 
are only going to Zanu (PF) activists.

“In some of the affected areas, our supporters have been told to go get the 
inputs from (Prime Minister Morgan) Tsvangirai because the seeds and 
fertiliser currently being distributed belonged to Mugabe,” a provincial 
MDC-T official said.

This is despite the fact that seeds and fertiliser are part of a 
government-initiated subsidised input scheme announced by Finance Minister 
Tendai Biti recently.

The official also revealed the MDC-T was reliably informed that the lists of 
its supporters compiled by the traditional leaders were being handed over to 
the dreaded Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) in Mutare which was 
allegedly working with the Registrar General’s Office to doctor the voters’ 

“We have it on good authority that CIO is also involved in this operation, 
whereby it is conniving with the Registrar General’s Office to remove the 
names or alter information of known MDC supporters on the voters’ roll,” 
said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of 
victimisation by the army.

The Zimbabwean could not verify this information with Registrar General 
Tobaiwa Mudede. The incidents in Manicaland are part of a wider Zanu (PF) 
campaign to victimise and intimidate opponents ahead of the elections.

The campaign to cow opponents ahead of the polls has also seen a spike in 
incidents of political violence across the country, with human rights groups 
reporting a rise in cases of violence and human rights abuses – including 
assault, intimidation, rape and torture.

Traditional chiefs from Manicaland province have also already been summoned 
to a “indoctrination workshop” where Three Brigade commander Douglas 
Nyikayaramba allegedly told them to support Zanu (PF) or they would be 
deposed from their positions.

Zimbabwe is next year looking to hold a referendum on a new constitution 
followed by elections that many analysts have warned could see a return to 
violence without political, security and electoral reforms.

Zimbabwe’s elections have been characterized by political violence and gross 
human rights abuses with the last vote in 2008 ending inconclusively after 
the military-led campaign of violence and murder that forced then opposition 
leader Morgan Tsvangirai to withdraw from a second round presidential 

A power-sharing government formed by Mugabe and Tsvangirai after the flopped 
poll was tasked to stabilise the economy, easy political tensions and write 
a new and democratic constitution that would ensure future elections are 
free and fair.


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