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MDC real change heroes remembered
Movement for Democratic Change
April 06, 2011

Hundreds of MDC supporters today gathered in Harare for the memorial service and unveiling of the tombstones of slain MDC activists, Tonderai Ndira, Godfrey Kauzani, Cain Nyevhe, Better Chokururama and Abigail Chiroto.

The memorial service came at a time when most victims of political violence had neither received a proper memorial service nor recognition due to the political tensions in the country.

Speaking at the memorial service held at the Dutch Reformed Church in central Harare, President Tsvangirai said the gallant sons and daughters of Zimbabwe died for a new, free and democratic Zimbabwe where all people live in peace.

"We call for a peaceful election in which the people's rights for freedom of expression, movement, speech and assembly are respected. We call for a roadmap to a violence-free election that guarantees that everyone is free to choose leaders and live in peace.

"That is the Zimbabwe which the gallant sons and daughters of this country died for. And that is the Zimbabwe for which Tonderai Ndira, Cain Nyevhe, Godfrey Kauzani, Better Chokururama, Abigail Chiroto and many others across the country paid the ultimate prize for," he said.

President Tsvangirai said the MDC and its supporters were at the mercy of brutality and called for the police to exercise their constitutional role without favour and partiality. He said a lot of perpetrators of violence are walking scot free, while the innocent citizens of Zimbabwe carry the scars of abuse.

"We are angry because our parents, our brothers, our husbands and our wives were killed in State-sponsored violence, which is a cruel irony because it is the duty of the State to protect the citizens and not harm them. We are angry because the Commissioner-General, Augustine Chihuri has chosen to engage in selective application of the law and to personalise what should otherwise be a State-institution".

"We urge Commissioner Chihuri to arrest all perpetrators of violence without fear or favour and without the needless selective application of the law. In the absence of arrests and prosecution, history will record that the police force in this country folded its arms and closed its eyes while the merchants of violence killed and brutalised innocent civilians," he said.

Giving solidarity messages, civic society organisations called for true, proper national healing for the country to heal. The churches further castigated the violence taking place and said the merchants of violence do not have any peaceful situation.

Bishop Ancelimo Magaya said one can never separate politics from the word of God.

"The reason why some politicians alienate themselves from the church is because they want to commit sinful acts. We are reduced and confined to preaching in churches and at funerals, but we need to know how the people are dying and who is killing them," Bishop Magaya said.

President Tsvangirai went on to unveil the tombstones of the slain MDC activist at the Warren Hills cemeteries in Harare.

Present at service were Vice President, Hon. Thokozani Khupe, MDC Secretary General Hon. Tendai Biti, the Women's Assembly chairperson Hon. Theresa Makone, Youth Assembly chairperson Hon. Thamsanqa Mahlangu, and several MDC leaders and government ministers.

Meanwhile, Zanu PF thugs attempted to disrupt unveiling of tombstones at Warren Hills Cemetery. Their efforts were thwarted by vigilant MDC youths and they were forced to flee the scene in the hired kombis.

Riot police arrived later at the cemetery shortly after President Tsvangirai and senior leaders had left the venue and threw teargas to disperse the crowd that had gathered for the memorial service.

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