By Nokuthaba Nkomo
The Nelson Chamisa-led MDC has set a date for its 19th anniversary celebrations which were last month postponed following a government ban on public gatherings.
The ban, which has not yet been lifted, was imposed in a bid to contain the spread of cholera which broke out in Harare’s Budiriro and Glen View suburbs last month.
MDC national spokesperson Jacob Mafume said the celebrations have been rescheduled to October 27 in Harare at Gwanzura Stadium.
He noted that the anniversary is to be held despite the ban as the party realised that the Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) has been allowing Zanu PF meetings to go ahead.
“We will have our celebrations here in Harare at Gwanzura Stadium because we have realised the police hypocrisy when they banned our event yet at the same time, they let Zanu PF go ahead.
Mafume said they have since written an application notifying the police of their event and are awaiting a response.
He pointed out that the opposition party is determined to defy the ban if denied the authority to do so as several other gatherings such as church meetings have previously been given the permission to take place.
“We have since notified them of our intention to have our anniversary on October 27 but we have not yet received their response,” he said.
“They have allowed church gatherings that attract bigger crowds to go ahead so they should allow us to also do our activities or we will defy their ban; that is the point we have reached.”
Asked whether the anniversary is inclusive of MDC president Nelson Chamisa’s inauguration, Mafume could neither confirm nor deny saying those attending the anniversary will find out on the day.
“We invite all our supporters to come on the day and that is when they will get to know the full agenda of the day,” Mafume noted.
The MDC anniversary has been postponed twice following the ban on public gatherings.
The opposition party last month alleged that the cancellation of its event was a political move as it suspected that government feared what was going to happen if Chamisa addressed the nation following the controversy around the results of the July 30 elections. Daily News