Zanu PF youths yesterday threatened to take their MDC counterparts head-on if they protest against the recent 150% hike in fuel prices and the general economic meltdown in the country.
Addressing journalists in Harare yesterday after President Emmerson Mnangagwa hiked fuel prices on Saturday night, ruling party youths threw their weight behind the Zanu PF leader and vowed they would not fold their arms if the MDC threatens to overthrow a constitutionally-elected government.
“Our position is very clear; we will not allow the opposition to put us in the corner. We are humans and we might at one time be forced to react,” Zanu PF national youth commissar Godfrey Tsenengamu said.
“We are not going to fold our hands, we will meet blow by low if the need arises. This (country) is not a church, we will not sit down and watch them causing anarchy. This is not going to happen. If they start, they must be ready for the consequences.”
The MDC youths have threatened to protest this week against the economic meltdown characterised by shortages of basic commodities and price hikes.
The party’s previous protests in Harare have attracted a lot of participants.
MDC youth secretary-general Denford Ngadziore yesterday scoffed at the Zanu PF threats, saying no amount of intimidation would stop the wheels of change.
“Demonstration is our constitutional right. We don’t budge to those threats. These are the same youths who demonstrated against (former President) Robert Mugabe because they knew it was their democratic right. I treat their utterances as empty threats,” Ngadziore said.
But Tsenengamu warned that the MDC should know that protests have not helped anything in the history of Zimbabwe.
Zanu PF deputy youth secretary Lewis Mathuthu said they recently met and resolved not to tolerate opposition attempts to revolt against government.
He defended Mnangagwa’s recent fuel price hike, saying it was long overdue.
“I am very happy that the price of fuel has finally been pegged up to standard in terms of what other countries are doing. A lot of fuel was going out of the country. A lot of our fuel was going to Mozambique, South Africa and DRC,” Mathuthu alleged.
He also warned manufactures and retailers against raising prices of commodities, saying they were already exorbitant.
“We do not expect the prices of other commodities to go up because they are already exorbitant and it was only fuel that was very low and government was carrying the burden of subsidising fuel using foreign currency, something that we don’t have,” he said.