Zimbabwe soldiers walked the streets of the capital Harare today as subdued calm returned, a day after clashes between security forces and opposition protesters killed three persons.
Gunfire crackled yesterday as troops, together with armoured vehicles and a military helicopter, cleared the streets of demonstrators who accused the ruling party of trying to rig Monday’s presidential election.
Many shops have still not opening since morning in Harare, where scattered debris, charred remains from fires. Which triggered few dozen soldiers to act as a reminder of the violence that erupted a day before.
“Yesterday was a very sad day for Zimbabwe ,” minibus taxi driver Gift said, glancing over his shoulder as a soldier smoking a cigarette looked on.
“We hope things remain quiet and that we can all just forget about this election. We don’t know if it was fair. The government will do what they want.”
The deployment of soldiers and their beating of unarmed protesters set back President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s efforts to shed Zimbabwe ‘s pariah status after decades of repression under Robert Mugabe, who was ousted in a coup in November.
Mnangagwa blamed the violence on the opposition Movement for Democratic Alliance, led by Nelson Chamisa, his main rival in a presidential election the results of which have not yet been announced.
Protests actually began shortly after Chamisa said he had won the popular vote.
LET’S SAY A PRAYER FOR ”ZIMBABWE”