Zanu-PF and other former Southern African liberation movements started their four-day meeting at Pretoria’s Freedom Park on Wednesday to strategize and share plans on how to strengthen their parties, remain relevant to their people, and - of course - remain in power.
In Wednesday’s league meetings, the youth members of these parties pledged to do what they can to help Zanu-PF win upcoming elections in Zimbabwe.
Addressing youth league leaders from the African National Congress of South Africa, South West African People’s Organization (SWAPO) of Namibia, the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA), Frelimo of Mozambique and Chama Chamapinduzi (CCM) of Tanzania, Zanu-PF National Secretary for Youth Affairs, Absalom Sikhosana, asked them to help the party to win the coming elections.
Sikhosana called the coming election “a do or die” for his party, saying the party had to win it at all costs.
He said a Zanu-PF win would silence the party’s critics who say that it does not enjoy majority support.
Sikhosana and other youth leaders denied that Zanu-PF is behind politically motivated violence and intimidation that appears to be on the rise as Zimbabwe prepares for the general election expected this year.
South Africa’s ruling African National Congress Youth League President, Ronald Lamola, told Zanu-PF youth that they will get all the support they need from his league to secure victory in the coming poll.
However, he warned that the youth in South Africa will not condone violence, regardless who the perpetrators are.
The Leader of Namibia’s SWAPO Youth league, Elija Ngurare, urged the people of Zimbabwe to learn from this year’s elections in Kenya, which have been peaceful so far.
The women’s leagues and war veterans from these parties also held their meetings today. The conference is expected to end on Saturday, when presidents of these former liberation parties, including President Robert Mugabe, are expected to attend.