Zimbabwe: Thousands in anti-Mugabe march

AP News
Posted: Apr 14, 2016 1:02 PM
Zimbabwe: Thousands in anti-Mugabe march

HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — In one of the biggest protests seen in Zimbabwe in recent years, thousands of opposition supporters Thursday marched in the capital to denounce President Robert Mugabe's alleged misrule.

Mostly wearing the red colors of the main opposition MDC-T party, marchers in Harare chanted songs denouncing the 92-year-old veteran ruler, who recently said he has no plans to step down.

Such huge demonstrations are rare in Zimbabwe, where police routinely use force to break up opposition protests.

Police had initially banned the march before a court overturned the ban on Wednesday.

Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, who shared power with Mugabe for five years before losing disputed elections in 2013, organized the march.

Women with children strapped to their backs joined marchers carrying placards demanding that Mugabe steps down. Mugabe has been in power since independence from white minority rule in 1980.

Some marchers carried banners reading: "Old clueless Mugabe must go."

"Where is our $15 billion dollars?" read one placard, in reference to recent statements by Mugabe that $15 billion worth of diamonds was looted in eastern Zimbabwe.

Read another placard: "Where are our 2.2 million jobs?" referring to Mugabe's 2013 election pledge to create over 2 million jobs.

Zimbabwe is battling a worsening economic decline, highlighted by company closures and growing unemployment.

Mugabe has previously said he won't resign, adding he will rule "until God says come."