Citizen reporter and ANA
Premium Journalist
2 minute read
15 Jan 2019
8:14 am

MDC headquarters burns as Zimbabwe continues to rage

Citizen reporter and ANA

The neighbouring country is in uproar with both sides blaming the other for the state of the economy.

Picture: Twitter/@MDCZimbabwe

Four people were feared dead on Monday while more than 20 people were treated for gunshot wounds as violent protests swept through Zimbabwe after government increased the price of fuel.

News broke on Monday that the headquarters of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) were attacked by people using petrol bombs.

In a Zanu-PF-led government statement, they blamed the protests on the MDC and civil society. The opposition has steadfastly refused to accept the result of last year’s elections.

In a statement on Monday, Minister of State for National Security Owen Ncube alleged: “The prevailing situation in the country is a culmination of a well-orchestrated series of events by the MDC Alliance working in cahoots with NGOs, civic society, youth organisations, pressure groups and individuals. Regrettably, this has resulted in the loss of life and property including injury to police officers and members of the public. We express our deepest condolences to the bereaving families.”

On Saturday night, President Emmerson Mnangagwa hiked the fuel price with over 100 percent, triggering protests.

Two people were reportedly shot in the populous high-density suburb of Harare, with another in the dormitory town of Chitungwiza, about 30km south of the capital.

The fourth person was reportedly shot in Epworth.

The protestors barricaded several roads in both Harare and Bulawayo using boulders, burning tyres and logs. Businesses that opened for the day were shut down at around 11am.

The protests turned violent, with those travelling into town being beaten up and made to disembark from all public transport.

Over the weekend, Zimbabwe’s biggest labour body, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) called for a national strike after severe cash shortages plunged the economy into disarray.

Police and the military were monitoring the situation.

Buses and flights to and from the country have been cancelled by carriers nervous about the situation.

The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR) said it had treated around 20 people by sunset.

“The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights has received widespread reports of protesters who have sustained gunshot wounds after being shot during the ongoing nationwide protests … The extent of the injuries and the exact number of casualties is still being assessed,” the human rights doctors said.

ZCTU called for a national stayaway from Monday to Wednesday.

Official numbers for the deceased and injured were not immediately available.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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