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Zim war vets 'join opposition parties to demand electoral reforms'

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Zim war vets 'join opposition parties to demand electoral reforms'

4th October 2016

By: News24Wire

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Zimbabwe's war veterans have reportedly joined opposition parties in demanding electoral reforms, ahead of the country's 2018 elections.

According to NewsDay, the ex-freedom fighters led by former minister Christopher Mutsvangwa said that the government should listen to the calls made by the people in order to "reconnect with the masses".

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Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association spokesperson, Douglas Mahiya said that the country's former liberation fighters wanted to see peaceful elections where all political parties participated "freely".

He further said that the war veterans would stand up to any violence, killing or shedding of blood.

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"We have had enough and enough of our people have died already especially during the war. The violence must stop and we are appalled at the direction the country is taking ahead of the 2018 elections," Mahiya was quoted as saying.

The 1970s war veterans were in the past reportedly the power behind President Robert Mugabe's regime.

Widespread reports claimed that the war veteran were often the ones to intimidate opposition supporters not to cause any "problems" for Mugabe and his Zanu-PF party.

However, in recent months the former liberation fighters broke ranks and lambasted the veteran leader.

In a rare communique the group slammed Mugabe's "dictatorial tendencies" and accused him of presiding over a declining economy.

The veterans of the country's 1970s liberation war, vowed they would not support him if he sought re-election in 2018.

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