Officials in Zimbabwe have banned an upcoming anti-corruption march organized by the main opposition party, Movement for Democratic Change-Alliance. The announcement was made by Ministry Spokesperson, Nick Mnangwana via the state-owned newspaper, The Herald.
“The State has apparatus that are in place to ensure that the constitutional order (is maintained),” Mangwana said of the march initially scheduled for July 31. “There is nothing anti-corruption about the protests, as you can see, everyone is mobilising with the view of overthrowing the government.”
Mnangagwa also slammed the march as a “subversion of the constitutional order,” calling it “unconstitutional” and that “it will not be allowed to happen.”
Last month, police in Harare arrested several senior MDC officials after attempting to enter its headquarters, which is being occupied by members of the party.
The government is having to tackle two factions of the party after they split alliances earlier this year. The MDC has been divided since the Supreme Court ruled on March 30, that Nelson Chamisa was not its legitimate leader and installed Thokozani Khupe as its interim leader.
Some have accused the government of attempting to cripple the party. Chamisa, 42, lost the 2018 presidential vote to Emmerson Mnangagwa and subsequently accused Mnangagwa of rigging the election.
“My position is that we as MDC we held our congress in May 2019. Nelson Chamisa is our president and our next congress is 2024. Full stop,” MDC vice president Tendai Biti told reporters at the time. “The government is trying to usurp our party.”