PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe yesterday begged people in Manicaland to vote for him and his Zanu PF party during the July 31 harmonised polls.
REPORT BY OBEY MANAYITI
Addressing more than 20 000 party supporters most of whom were bussed from districts in the province, Mugabe said Zanu PF could not afford a repeat of the 2008 harmonised elections where it only managed six out of the 26 contested parliamentary seats in Manicaland.
The rally was one of the provincial star rallies that Mugabe is expected to address, one in each of the country’s 10 provinces. The Mutare rally, held at the local aerodrome, brought together people from Nyanga, Makoni, Buhera, Chimanimani, Zimunya-Marange, Chipinge and other districts in Manicaland province.
More people arrived in lorries long after the President had finished delivering his hour-long speech.
Mugabe went through history lessons that have become associated with his campaign rallies.
He promised to get tough with homosexuals saying in jest that they should be beheaded if they failed to produce children.
“In 2008, you almost forgot that (first Zanu chairman Herbert) Chitepo and other gallant sons died in the liberation struggle both outside and inside the country. You did well to support the liberation struggle here, but what did you do in 2008?” queried Mugabe.
“Did you enjoy bread from the enemy? Were we swayed by the enemy’s words? Is it witchcraft? You heard the words of change, but can we change the liberation history, our sovereignty, independence forgetting that it all came out of the shed blood?”
Mugabe recalled how he was assisted to cross into Mozambique by the late nationalist Chief Rekai Tangwena. Mugabe called for peace during the election period and also dismissed as untrue rigging allegations levelled against his party by the MDC formations.