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Civic groups tell Mugabe to surrender

31st May 2003

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A coalition of Zimbabwean civic and political groups yesterday called on President Robert Mugabe and his ZANU-PF party to surrender power or be prepared to face widespread resistance to their "oppressive rule".

Wurayayi Zembe, the representative of political parties within the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), which advocates a new democratic constitution for the country, said Mugabe's surrender would pave the way for a national constitutional conference.

"Failure by Mugabe to make a national statement of surrender will leave us with no option but to intensify our multi-faceted resistance to oppressive rule," Zembe told a news conference.

Expressing support for the planned opposition anti-government strike and street marches next week, Zembe said "we urge the people of Zimbabwe to put more pressure on the illegitimate ZANU-PF regime until the people's power is established through a democratic constitution".

Mugabe's "final downfall is imminent", he added.

"The government is so defunct that it cannot provide the citizens with the means to have money. It has become a murderous government ... they have buried us alive".

Zimbabwe has in recent weeks faced an unprecedented shortage of cash resulting in some banks and institutions turning to the black market to buy Zimbabwe dollars to give to clients.

Speaking on behalf of the six opposition parties aligned to the NCA, Zembe called for the dissolution of parliament, which he said had been abused by its own pro-Mugabe majority to enact repressive laws. – Sapa-AFP.
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