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Political Discrimination Is Alleged In Allocation Of Harare Market Stalls

Operatives of Zimbabwe's ruling party are alleged to have been making life difficult for street vendors in Harare's populous Mbare district by imposing political conditions on hawkers seeking to be allocated a stall, sources in the neighborhood said.

The ZANU-PF activists have allegedly demanded that those applying for market stalls in Musika, Mupedzanhamo and other markets prove ruling party membership.

Vendors attending a meeting Thursday evening of the Combined Harare Residents Association said the ZANU-PF operatives were obliging those seeking to rent stalls to produce ruling party membership cards and excluding non-party members.

The ZANU-PF militants were said to have threatened to beat or even kill anyone who complained about the politicized system of allocating much-sought stalls.

Residents also complained about inconsistent and inflated municipal service bills.

Combined Harare Residents Association coordinator Margaret Matienga, who lives in Mbare, told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that residents of the district intend to stage demonstrations soon over such issues.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...