Zimbabwean businesses shutdown in protests against Mugabe

By Polycarp Kazaresam

Yesterday, Zimbabwe experienced a “stay away day”, a strike against the government’s economic policies that closed businesses and disrupted public transport.

The strike follows days of unrest over the government’s failure to pay civil cervant’s wages, import restrictions, currency shortage, and police road blocks that were allegedly extorting cash from commercial drivers.

"This is a sign of economic collapse which has left people with nothing more to sacrifice and nothing to lose," Dumisani Nkomo, spokesman for the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition campaign group commented. 

"We are heading towards a tipping point as a country, where citizens will express their pain by any means."

Civil society organisations called for the strike, in order to pressure President Robert Mugabe into tackling Zimbabwe’s economic problems.

In some Harare suburbs, protesters burned tyres and blocked streets to prevent cars from driving into the city centre. 

Police fired tear gas at a small group of people. The main bus ranks were deserted and commuters were left stranded.

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) group said police had arrested at least 20 Zimbabweans

The strike was the latest in a series of protests against Mugabe's government. Such protests are rare in Zimbabwe.
 

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