MDC President Nelson Chamisa yesterday distanced himself and his party from involvement in the fatal post-election protests which rocked Harare on August 1.
Appearing before the commission of inquiry, Chamisa said that the shootings were planned.
Chamisa said the August 1 shootings and violence were carried out by some elements in Zanu PF in collusion with the military after it became clear that they had lost the elections and were aware of the intention to cook results.
“August 1 is a very sad day in the history of our country; very regrettable for me, but the way I see it, it was a pre-emptive measure to avert what they expected to be a response from those whom they had robbed of electoral victory. It was what I would call a managed explosion… calculated to forestall any kind of protests, especially in the context of results that would be doctored or not real. It was designed to be the platform for the release of fake results and justify a putative attack on innocent citizens,” he said.
“We had won the election; we had bagged it and there was no need for us under those circumstances to do anything that would then cause unnecessary challenges in the context of our country… there were 4 million ballot papers that were printed after July 30 and that can be validated … they were being printed because wrong results were going to be announced, Zec’s figures could not tally,” he said.
“In the context of August 1, this was a plan that was done well ahead by the deployment of water cannons at Harvest House on July 28, on a Saturday. Why would you deploy tanks at Harvest House and not at Zanu PF headquarters? These are both political parties that are in an election but you have already deployed against one and have already worked on a presumption that there is going to be a demonstration that is going to come or emanate from one party and not the other,” he said.