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One dead, 22 hurt in Citizens Coalition for Change rally in Zimbabwe

Zimbabwean opposition leader Nelson Chamisa says violent attacks by Zanu-PF supporters were 'provocative and intended to plunge the country into bloodshed and instability'.
Zimbabwean opposition leader Nelson Chamisa says violent attacks by Zanu-PF supporters were 'provocative and intended to plunge the country into bloodshed and instability'.
Image: REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

One person was killed and 22 others seriously injured at a Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) rally in the Zimbabwean Midlands city of Kwekwe on Sunday.

The CCC supporters were attacked by a group of men armed with spears, machetes, iron bars and stones. The incident happened while opposition leader Nelson Chamisa was addressing thousands of supporters at the rally, ahead of March by-elections.

In a statement, Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) said Mboneni Ncube, 30, was stabbed thrice with a sharp object. He died in hospital. 

“Towards the end of Nelson Chamisa‘s address, suspected Zanu-PF youths intercepted people in CCC T-shirts who were walking to the rally and threw stones at them. The skirmishes, about 400m from the venue, resulted in the deceased being stabbed thrice with a sharp object on the back, and died at Kwekwe general hospital,” read the police statement.

Police have arrested 16 people in connection with the violence.

The violence broke out a day after Zimbabwean Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga threatened to crush the CCC “like lice”.

Chiwenga made the remarks while addressing Zanu-PF supporters at a rally in the same city, Kwekwe, on Saturday.

“I have heard others here saying, 'Down with Triple-C'. Let me assure you that there is nothing that it [CCC] can achieve; you see how we crush lice with a stone. You put it on a flat stone and then flatten it to the extent that even flies will not make a meal out of it,” said Chiwenga.

Addressing a press conference on Monday, Chamisa said the violent attacks by Zanu-PF supporters were “provocative and intended to plunge the country into bloodshed and instability”.

TimesLIVE


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