By Tatenda Chitagu in masvingo
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has appealed to Zanu PF supporters to stick with the ruling party despite the deepening economic problems in the country.
Mnangagwa was speaking at a rally at the Matizha business centre in Serima, Gutu on Friday where thousands of Zanu PF supporters were bussed to the venue.
He said the multifaceted crisis facing the country should not drive ruling party supporters away from Zanu PF.
“You know where we are coming from and where we are going,” Mnangagwa said.
“We got problems as a country. But these are not problems that can force you to leave the party. These are problems that unite us to build our country.
“Yes, we have economic challenges, but they will pass.
“We shall come to a time when we shall say we went through hardships and hunger, but the period of plenty is coming.
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“I do not think next year is a drought period…..In the night, defend your party, during the day defend your party, whether you went to bed without eating or not.”
Zimbabwe is in the grip of hyperinflation and is struggling with shortages of foreign currency, fuel, medicines, mealie meal and rolling power cuts, among others.
The International Monetary Fund recently warned that without genuine political dialogue in Zimbabwe, chances of an economic turnaround were dim.
Mnangagwa has refused to engage in direct talks with his main rival Nelson Chamisa, who is challenging his legitimacy following the controversial 2018 elections.
On Friday the Zanu PF leader described Masvingo as a “one-party state” after the ruling party won 25 seats out of 26 seats in the 2018 general elections.
“Masvingo is a one-party state,” he said.
“The leadership and structures are strong from the grassroots to the top.
“Your coming here in your thousands shows that the structures are working.
“Of course, there may be one or two who are not party members, it is there and understandable.”
Mnangagwa poured scorn on Chamisa for continuing to challenge his election victory, saying the stance would not change anything.
“We want peace and harmony in our country. We want a relationship and interaction based on non-violence,” he said.
“We do not want violence, burning of property and blocking roads. We want unity.
“Of course, we have to disagree, but whatever we do, we must debate, not to say if I don’t get my way, nothing will go ahead.
“The sun will rise and set, January will come and go till December, while you are saying I won the elections, and we rule and rule while you are still stuck in the 2018 elections.
“We are now eyeing 2023.”