President Emerson Mnangagwa praised Mashonaland East province on Saturday for mobilising the largest gathering, so far, of ruling Zanu-PF supporters for his presidential election rally at Mutawatawa in Uzumba Maramba Pfungwe (UMP).
He is holding star rallies in different parts of the country to campaign for re-election on August 23 when the country chooses a President, House of Assembly and local government representatives for the next five years.
President Mnangagwa told party supporters at Mutawatawa Business Centre that the province had taken away the bragging rights from Masvingo, which mobilised 124 000 people for its provincial presidential star rally.
Jokingly, he said party secretary general Obert Mpofu, who hails from Matabeleland North, had estimated the turnout at the rally to be nearly his home province’s entire population.
No official head count for the Mutawatawa rally was given, but by far exceeded the tally for Masvingo, which had held the crown for the biggest attendance until now.
“I’m proud of you, your make ZANU PF proud, you are the cream of ZANU (PF),” President Mnangagwa told the enthusiastic crowd at Mutawatawa.
“Even visitors are surprised at this site. This is the evidence that we are united during the day, night, in days of hunger and in times of plenty. Hate us as much as you can, you from the West but we love our country. ZANU (PF) is the most popular party in the country. It brought independence to the people of Zimbabwe and this is the evidence that we are democratic.”
President Mnangagwa was visibly excited by the turnout, and urged supporters to translate the huge attendance into votes on election day.
It showed, he said, that come rain, sunshine, drought, night and day and cold or hot days, Zanu-PF will continue to rule the country, adding that even the fallen heroes from the province would sleep peacefully knowing that they had left the country’s inheritance to people that are prepared to preserve it.
“I want to remember all the fallen heroes of this area; under the Second Republic we recognize those that contributed to the independence of this country. At tonight’s gala we would be remembering a hero who died in 1962, Dr Parirenyatwa who was killed for working and fighting for this country. We have many others that died as well from this province. We have not forgotten the Cdes Rex Nhongo, Ernest Kadungure, George Nyandoro, Absalom Kabasa, Chenejerai Hunzvi, Tichaona Jokonya, Paradzai Zimondi, Joe Biggie Matiza, and many others.”
“Our trade mark as ZANU (PF) is winning. We won the war, even after having sanctions imposed on us we are surviving, since 1980 we have been winning and will continue winning. If anyone dreams of ZANU (PF) losing, they must wake up and brew beer to have such dreams exorcised,” said President Mnangagwa.
With such crowds, he said he is going to sleep peacefully knowing that the opposition will never beat ZANU (PF) even if they voted with their hands, legs and heads as extras, and exhorted the spirit of Munhumutapa to continue to ensure that Zimbabweans remained united.
He said Mashonaland East had, through Chief Svosve, demonstrated leadership on land reform and gave assurances that the exercise would never be reversed.
“They imposed sanctions on us after we took back our land; the land reform programme united us with our land. Nobody should ever dream of taking the land from its owners. It will never happen, the land reform is irreversible,” said President Mnangagwa.
“Those that come to the rural areas fomenting violence, chiefs please when they come, do not beat them up, give them water and allow them to pass but do not give them accommodation, don’t allow them to spend the night.”
He said the country had achieved its main priority, which is food security at household level for the past three years, and the Second
Republic was working hard to consolidate this position through the construction of dams and establishment and revival of irrigation schemes.
“We built many dams. We brought ways to ensure food security at every household. We have three years in Zimbabwe without hunger. We brought Pfumvudza and irrigation which ensures we have enough (irrigated) hactarage so we have enough food whether there is drought or good rains.
The irrigation schemes that we have must ensure that whether it rains or we have drought, we have enough food,” said President Mnangagwa, adding that no Zimbabwean would be allowed to starve as there is enough food reserves to cater for households that might experience shortages.
He chronicled many projects among the 861 that the Second Republic has undertaken in Mashonaland East that include district registries at Wedza, Mutoko, Murehwa and renovation of Nyamapanda Border Post, district education offices BSPZ complex in Marondera and Mutawatawa flats. Other projects are the construction of female hostels at Kushinga-Phikelela Technical College, Marondera University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, teachers houses at eight schools, girls hostels at St Anne’s Goto High School and four dams that include Muchekeranwa, Marovanyati, Chivhu and Kunzvi, whose works are in progress. – New Ziana