When President Emmerson Mnangagwa deposed long-time ruler Robert Mugabe in a coup, a new term for his reign was created - the New Dispensation. It was a term that was supposed to usher hope for a broken citizenry, a term that was supposed to signify a great dissociation from the disastrous and calamitous rule of Robert Mugabe.
But nothing seems to have changed. In fact, things have gotten worse. The repressive hand of a callous regime has been tightened. People are dying. An economy is further sinking. And in the midst of all this turmoil, a whole president is promising to kill anyone who enetertains the idea of standing up to an insensitive governemnt.
President Mnangagwa issued a chilling warning to anyone who wants to engage in protesting. It literally sends shivers down the spine. During a "thank you" rally over the weekend, Mnangagwa said that he will not hesitate deploying the army in order to quell protests. Scary.
"We saw them burning police cars and killing cops, where else have you seen that? But we said no, we do not need violence. We deployed soldiers to stop the protesters and they quelled the disturbances," he said.
"Now they are planning more chaos, but we are telling everyone in the country that if you do not want peace, take part in the noise!
"Those that want peace, stay at home, so that we deal with those that want violence.
"We will sort them out. Those who come to you inviting you to the protests, tell them to pass, what you are saying has bad omens of Legion."
Zimbabwe was engulfed in a state of gloom when the January protests resulted in the deaths of 12 people, with hundreds and hundreds injured, arrested. Women were raped by the soldiers. Citizens were beaten and harassed by the soldiers. Sad.
"We have information that they are planning another disturbance. Let me tell the nation that those who want to join them, go ahead and those who do not want, I advise you to stay in your homes because we are going to deal with those who want violence," he warned.
"In Harare and Bulawayo [the two largest cities in Zimbabwe] violent protesters were preventing people from going to work and even burning buses. We don’t want violence, so I said soldiers go and silence these people, they were silenced,” Mnangagwa boasted.
"In places like Bulawayo, they were moving around telling people to go and engage in violence.
"They told them that if anyone gets arrested, they should go to a certain place, there are lawyers waiting to defend them “If anyone gets hurt, they should go to a certain place, there are doctors waiting to treat them.
"We are now going after those doctors who were involved in those activities.
"Those lawyers that were inciting violence, we are now going after them. So those who choose violence, we are prepared."
And now lawyers and doctors are being threatened too. The Law Society of Zimbabwe, an umbrella body for all lawyers operating in the country, staged a march against the breakdown in the rule of law in the country. Lawyers said the judiciary in Zimbabwe was captured. A travesty of justice.
The Zimbabwe Doctors for Human Rights and the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights were at the forefront of providing assistance to victims of military brutality.
There is so much to work on, but the President is fixated on how to make his people suffer.
Header image credit - France 24