The Herald (Harare)

11 January 2013

Zimbabwe: ZRP Warns Against Political Violence

THE Zimbabwe Republic Police says it will not tolerate political violence in national elections scheduled for this year and has warned perpetrators that they will face the full wrath of the law regardless of their political affiliation.

Officially opening the ZRP Support Unit senior officers' course at Shamva battle camp in Mashonaland Central province, Deputy Commissioner General Innocent Matibiri said any disturbances to discredit the polls would not be tolerated.

"We are not going to tolerate any form of political violence meant to discredit these important national processes. We want the people of Zimbabwe to exercise their voting right in a peaceful and tranquil environment.

"Police officers are going to arrest all perpetrators of violence regardless of their political affiliation. My passionate appeal to political leaders is for them to exercise tolerance to avoid political polarisation," he said.

Previous national elections have been characterised by inter-party violence forcing Government to set up an Organ on National Healing and Reconciliation.

Deputy Commissioner General Matibiri urged the police to desist from engaging in corrupt activities warning that those caught would be expelled from the force.

"The organisation (ZRP) expects you to be the shining beacons in the maintenance of discipline and moral uprightness.

"Corruption is a cancer, which does not only tarnish our image, but compromises the provision of quality police services to the people of Zimbabwe," he said.

Deputy Commissioner General Matibiri urged the support unit to continue serving the country with unparalleled loyalty and commitment.

Deputy Commissioner General Matibiri applauded the Support Unit for the maintenance of orderliness at the Chiadzwa diamond area saying it was important to create a conducive mining environment in Marange.

He challenged the unit to play an important role in combating poaching especially of rhino and elephant species as this was a threat to tourism.

Deputy Commissioner General Matibiri also commended the unit for successfully removing rank marshals and touts thus bringing order at bus termini in Harare and other towns.

"There is a need for you to continue to be vigilant as there are some worrying reports that touting is slowly coming back. Local authorities should also play their part in this regard as police cannot do everything on its own."

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