HARARE – Zimbabwe’s Home Affairs Minister has confirmed that police have been deployed in Harare to patrol and conduct stop and search operations after protests over the latest fuel price hike.
Riot police have fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators in the capital Harare.
Cash shortages have plunged Zimbabwe’s economy into disarray, threatening widespread social unrest and undermining Mnangagwa’s efforts to win back foreign investors sidelined under his predecessor Robert Mugabe.
Mnangagwa’s announcement of a 150% increase in fuel prices was greeted with shock in Zimbabwe where unemployment stands at over 80%.
The main trade union, the ZCTU, has called for a three-day strike against a recent hike in the price of fuel.
The Zimbabwe Peace Project says that riot police have fired teargas in Harare’s Epworth suburb to disperse demonstrators, who responded by throwing stones at police.
Roads leading into the capital from some townships have been blocked by protesters, and commuters are being forced to disembark and go home.
In Bulawayo, rights activists say that some roads from the city’s western suburbs have been blocked with rocks, and pupils sent home from government schools.
The strike, called by the main labour union, has the backing of the opposition MDC.
They’re angry over the government’s decision to more than double the price of fuel on Saturday, a move they say will pile more hardships on citizens.