Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Zimbabwe Million-Man March Roars Into Life
May 25, 2016
Herald Reporters

All roads lead to the Robert Mugabe Square in Harare today for the Million-Man March amid calls for youths to shun factionalism and corruption, ills threatening the gains of the liberation struggle.

The marchers are expected to start converging at 5am with the actual march scheduled for 8am.

Assembly points have been created from which the youths will march to the venue — the Robert Mugabe Square near Rainbow Towers Hotel.

Masvingo and Mashonaland East provinces will gather at Rufaro Stadium, Manicaland at Raylton Sports Club, Mashonaland West at Kensington Shopping Centre and Mashonaland Central opposite the South African embassy.

Midlands and Matabeleland provinces will assemble at the National Sports Stadium.

The march, similar to the one held by war veterans in 2007, will be significant in cementing President Mugabe’s enduring status as an African icon.

The event is being organised by the zanu-pf Youth League to honour the achievements of the President and First Secretary of the revolutionary party.

Members of the Zanu-PF main wing, Women’s League, war veterans, churches and student associations will take part in the event.

Zanu-PF deputy secretary Cde Kudzai Chipanga yesterday said the Youth League was ready to roll.

“All is now in place and we only await the big day,” he said.

“We have sorted all logistics and the news from the provinces is pleasing. We expect the people to start arriving as early as 5am so that we reaffirm our support for the President in a resounding fashion.”

Political analysts and diplomats have described the march as a piece of history that testifies the durability of the values and ethos of Africa’s founding fathers who pioneered the total decolonisation of the continent.

Zanu-PF spokesperson Cde Simon Khaya Moyo described the march as a ‘rare event’ that needed maximum support.

“This is a special march led by our dynamic and resilient Youth League and we need to give them maximum support because it is rare to undertake such an exercise in recognition of the role our icon President Mugabe has played throughout the liberation struggle and the post-independence era,” he said.

“It is also a special day because it coincides with Africa Day. Recently he was chairman of the African Union and Sadc and he displayed exemplary leadership in all his undertakings nationally, continentally and internationally.”

Cde Khaya-Moyo said the youths should remain foresighted and shun factionalism and corruption.

“Youths are grateful to the attributes and imbued persona of Cde Mugabe,” he said,

“They must, therefore, be congratulated for leading by example as youths because they are the future leaders of tomorrow. They should continue with this spirit, remain focused, and continue to subscribe to the principles of our glorious party. They should shun factionalism, corruption, tribalism and regionalism.”

The march will be held under the theme: “Youth March in solidarity with visionary and iconic leadership of President Mugabe.”

Secretary for War Veterans in the Politburo Cde Sydney Sekeramayi said he was rallying all war veterans to come for the event.

“As a Politburo member and Senator, I am trying all I can do to ensure people attend in their numbers and contributing in meeting the targeted numbers. We are fully behind the march.”

By honouring President Mugabe, analysts said, the youths would shame detractors who want to pursue the regime change agenda using them.

Reports from Manicaland say the province is geared for the Million Man March with buses and resources having been mobilised in all the seven districts.

Mutare Urban led the mobilisation efforts as they managed to come up with 20 buses, enough for the city’s 19 wards.

Each ward has its own bus which was expected to leave the city at 4am. Each travelling delegate had food hampers lined up for them, with Dangamvura-Chikanga legislator, Cde Isau Mupfumi, saying $5 000 had been mobilised to cater for people from Mutare’s welfare during the trip to and from Harare.

Zanu-PF provincial secretary for administration, Cde Kenneth Saruchera said: “We are happy with the response we got from all the stakeholders. We want to thank schools and public transport operators for availing their buses for this noble cause.

“Mutare alone has 20 buses, while Makoni has 13 buses. We are expecting at least five buses per every district. From Mutare urban , we are expecting more than 2 000 people to be part of this historic march,” he said.

The Zanu-PF provincial chairperson for Matabeleland South, Cde Rabeleni Choeni said they had mobilised 21 buses that will ferry people to the march.

He said other party supporters had preferred to use their own means of transport to Harare.

“All the buses will leave their respective districts tonight (yesterday) and converge at the National Sports Stadium in the morning,” he said.

He said four buses will leave Beitbridge, four from Gwanda, five from Insiza, two from Matobo, two from Mangwe and one from Bulilima districts.

How Zanu-PF deals with corruption will go a long way towards the revival of the economy and the party's fortunes in 2018.

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