By Darlington Gatsi
HARARE’s Central Business District (CBD) came to a standstill as the ruling Zanu PF party swept the capital canvassing for support ahead of forthcoming general elections.
In the wee hours of Wednesday morning, Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (ZUPCO) buses could be seen in residential areas, hooting as they picked up Zanu PF supporters for a rally that was held at Robert Mugabe Square.
Being midweek, traffic from residential areas built as Zanu PF branded cars and buses made their way to the rally.
Commuters had to walk a considerable distance into the CBD as Zimbabwe Republic Police cleared omni buses paving the way for smooth flow of Zanu PF supporters attending the rally.
This was much to the frustration of a commuter who identified herself as Mrs Marufu.
“I do not understand why a rally has to be held during the midweek. I am late for work after spending two hours in the combi. Now I have to walk into town,” said.
● It’s 9:25 a.m and people who are going to work are now forced to walk to town as roads are blocked. Traffic along Bulawayo Road is disastrous. Buses ferrying @ZANUPF_Official supporters to @edmnangagwa‘s star rally have disrupted traffic flow. pic.twitter.com/soCYIhMOeC
— NewZimbabwe.com (@NewZimbabweCom) August 9, 2023
The usually busy Mupedzanhamo market in Mbare was quiet as vendors were rounded up to attend the rally.
Using its usual modus operandi, Zanu PF supporters were given a loaf of bread, fast food, a fizzy drink, a party Tshirt and a cap upon disembarking from buses.
Zanu PF left nothing to chance as it invaded Harare – an opposition stronghold since the turn of the millennium.
The capital has been elusive for the ruling party for both parliamentary and council seats, a record Mnangagwa is seeking to change in the upcoming general elections.
Currently, Zanu PF has two Parliamentary seats out of thirty in Harare.
“I am happy Harare that you came to this rally. This time I think Jehovah is in Harare. In past years you have recorded losses in elections by the opposition. With your attendance today this year we can wallop them. Your attendance shows that Zanu PF is the only people’s party.
“I say to you my dear brothers and sisters in Harare, polling station by polling station ward by ward we need a thunderous victory at each polling station. Thunderous victory in each ward on August 23,” said Mnangagwa.
As Mnangagwa was delivering his address, the Zanu PF security team had a torrid time calming supporters as they walked away before the rally finished.