real supporters of opposition political parties. The government scheme is supposed to benefit
everyone regardless of their political affiliation. In direct contravention of the Constitution, Zanu
PF, government officials and traditional as well as local authority leaders charged with the
distribution of inputs, conduct themselves in an openly partisan manner and show little regard for
the respect of the fundamental value of equality and dignity for all. Some citizens who have
attempted to call out these partisan acts have faced the brutality of the Zanu PF activists.
The culture of political intolerance in Zimbabwe is exposed by high levels of hate speech during
campaigns and on social media. Hate language demeans those involved in politics other than the
ruling party, hindering the full enjoyment of fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution. This
is seen through increased hate speech by what are known as ‘varakashi’ on Twitter.2 The toxicity
of political intolerance is seen through many addresses by Zanu PF aligned activists who are
urging ruling party supporters to cause harm to known opposition CCC members.
Addressing a meeting recently one Abton Mashayanyika known as a religious leader while
explaining the meaning of the ‘Down with so and so’ slogan went on to say ‘down with Nelson
Chamisa’. The slogan from the time of the liberation struggle meant the person mentioned in the
slogan had to be killed. Since uttering the words, Mashayanyika has not been arrested. Recently,
another religious leader said ‘white people are devils.’
Those responsible for the murder of Mboneni Ncube an CCC activist slain at a rally in Kwekwe in
the run up to the March 26 by-elections have not had their day in court. Many other activists were
left with life threatening injuries. While the suspect in the murder of the callously murdered
Moreblessing Ali, a CCC activist has appeared in court once the case seems to have gone cold.
On 27 August 2022, President Emmerson Mnangagwa insulted and labeled the CCC leader ‘a
mad man’. Opposition party leader Nelson Chamisa replied the next day, “I will reduce him to
mince meat” The clash between the two political leaders motivated violent clashes between their
party supporters. ZPP is concerned that the use of hate language drives political violence to high
The Private Voluntary Organizations Amendment Bill (PVO Bill) has become a tool of the
Mnangagwa administration to limit the right to freedom of expression and access to information.
Zimbabwe's civil society unfortunately as evidenced by the text of the PVO Bill is viewed as an
enemy whereas the mandate of CSOs as watchdogs is complimentary to entrenching democracy
and delivering on accountability and transparency. The government continues to utilize the law
as a weapon to quell dissent and has relentlessly attacked civil society organizations, branding
them ‘agents of the west and regime change’ and ‘purveyors of falsehoods.’ CSOs including ZPP
keep calling for more consultations with those affected by proposed new laws. The passing of the
PVO Bill a few months before the 2023 elections is ill timed, as it is likely to result in the isolation
of citizens and making it difficult for them to access information and voter education. The
Zimbabwe Electoral Commission has partnered CSOs to roll out voter education.
Citizens have also failed to enjoy Constitutionally guaranteed socio economic, environmental and
cultural rights making it difficult for anyone to consider citizens to be enjoying peace. The majority
of citizens continue to struggle to access health delivery that responds to all their needs. Most
public health institutions are unable to provide good services as they are operating on shoe string
Varakashi is a Shona word for “destroyers”. They troll social media platforms especially Twitter, attacking people
who challenge Zanu PF, President Mnangagwa’s policies or leadership. Their overarching aim is to push Zanu PF

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