Let’s unite against terror


There is a danger of concentrating on apportioning blame in connection with the dastardly terrorist attack at White City Stadium on Saturday.
And yet what should be at the forefront is the unreserved condemnation of the act of terrorism regardless of who is responsible.
What appears to be of prime importance is identification of culprits as opposed to highlighting the evils of terrorism.
Emphasis on witch-hunting is not the way to go. However, this is not to say culprits must not be hunted down — this must be done with the intention of showing how bad it is to be involved in such deviant behaviour.
Indeed, the apparent enthusiasm by members of the public to usurp the investigative role of the police is puzzling.
What is vital is to inculcate in people a national ethos that abhors terrorism, first and foremost. This should be able to let people see terror for the evil that it is and not an opportunity to score points on partisan grounds.
Terrorism should be roundly condemned from all angles.
Opposing political parties, factions from similar organisations, civil society and religious groups, among others, should all automatically speak with one voice against this evil.
It should develop into a national culture.
World-wide messages we have received on the terror attack are centred on condemnation and not finding out who was responsible.
This is as it should be. Surely it matters less whether the cowardly terrorist attack at White City Stadium was carried out by one faction or another or by someone from Beitbridge or Chirundu,
Rather it matters more to recognise that this callous act, which has already claimed the lives of two, is against our national interest.
It becomes even more ghastly to think there were people there not as partisan supporters of ZANU PF but people just interested in hearing what a political leader in their area had to say,
These are the same people who might also have attended Nelson Chamisa’s rally earlier. A good number were there on duty.
The indiscriminate nature of the attack is mind boggling.
Terror by any other name is still terror. There is this unfortunate tendency of considering something as a terrorist act only after quantifying its damage.
The incident at White City Stadium, where an explosive device was meant to indiscriminately maim and kill innocent souls, is terrorism regardless of extent of the damage.
Just think of the devastating effect the blast had on those in the stadium or those who had their loved ones there.
Terror is a universal scourge.
In the US for instance, acts of terrorism are not tried at state level but elevated to federal level. This demonstrates how this is regarded as something of national concern as opposed to regional or state level.
This is the same approach in the UK.
This is why we hail efforts by the National Peace and Reconciliation Commission to invite political party leaders to sign pledges of peace.
Hopefully, with time, this will be internalised and develop into a culture. We are looking at a situation where leaders will automatically blame violence for what it is without necessarily opting for the blame game. All the same, we hope the ugly incident at White City Stadium and various acts of violence which have so far been reported are a thing of the past.
Meanwhile, the electorate is pleased with the assurance by President Mnangagwa that the poll is going ahead.
Surely, nothing should interfere with the anticipated free, fair, peaceful and credible harmonised general elections on July 30.


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