By UK Bureau & Agencies
THE South African government on Wednesday “noted protest action in Zimbabwe” and said it was monitoring the situation. This comes amid reports of a clampdown on citizens by the military there.
“Consultations are taking place between diplomats. We’re confident measures being taken by the Zimbabwean government will resolve the situation,” said Ndivhuwo Mabaya, department of international relations and cooperation spokesperson.
The opposition in Pretoria however, condemned the government crackdown against protestors.
Julius Malema’s Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party said it condemned “the unleashing of the military on citizens who are exercising their right to protest.
“A democratic government knows too well that militaries are not entities used to respond to the unarmed and defenceless.”
“The progressive international community celebrated the fall of Robert Mugabe, with the hope that an era of human rights abuses associated with his era had come to an end.
“President Mnangagwa, however, is consistent with the Mugabe administration with these violations.”
The party added; “A democratic government knows too well that militaries are not entities used to [be used to] respond to protesting, armless, and defenceless citizens.
“To unleash the military is to treat citizens as enemies of the state who must be met with excessive violence, force, and death, as militaries are death-driven, only to be deployed to those who are armed and sworn enemies of the people. Militaries should never ever be used against protests and civil defiance demonstrations actions.”
This comes as Zimbabweans are protesting the collapse of their economy and the massive fuel hike imposed on them over the weekend.
An internet blackout was imposed by the Zimbabwean government on Tuesday, a day after a three-day national shutdown was called by the country’s largest trade union.
The blackout was lifted late Wednesday afternoon.