Growing Opposition in Zimbabwe

In 1991 the government of Zimbabwe introduced the Structural Adjustment Programme, designed to revitalize the economy by 1995. The question facing the ruling party (ZANU-PF) is: can it implement stringent economic programmes and still hold on to its traditional supporters – the people most adversely affected by the new economic policies? With the absorption of ZAPU-PF and its leadership, ZANU-PF had eliminated its largest opposition bloc and brought it under the umbrella of the ruling party. However, the ‘united’ party became vulnerable to internal opposition. President Mugabe looked to the 1990 presidential and general elections to give him a mandate for a ‘de jure’ one-party State. But in the run-up to the elections party leaders met with strong opposition. When ZANU-PF and ZAPU-PF reached a unity agreement in 1987, their leaders agreed that the ‘united’ party would seek to establish a one-party State. However, the events in Eastern Europe and African countries such as Liberia and Benin have caused people to ask why Zimbabwe should travel down the road other countries are abandoning. The ruling party’s instinctive response to opposition has been to use the powers of the State to suppress dissent. The strikers and demonstrators have been suppressed, but the voices of discontent rumble below the surface. Ref.

Title: Growing Opposition in Zimbabwe
Author: Knight, Virginia C.
Year: 1991
Periodical: Issue
Volume: 20
Issue: 1
Period: Winter
Pages: 23-30
Language: English
Geographic term: Zimbabwe
External link: https://www.jstor.org/stable/1166770
Abstract: In 1991 the government of Zimbabwe introduced the Structural Adjustment Programme, designed to revitalize the economy by 1995. The question facing the ruling party (ZANU-PF) is: can it implement stringent economic programmes and still hold on to its traditional supporters – the people most adversely affected by the new economic policies? With the absorption of ZAPU-PF and its leadership, ZANU-PF had eliminated its largest opposition bloc and brought it under the umbrella of the ruling party. However, the ‘united’ party became vulnerable to internal opposition. President Mugabe looked to the 1990 presidential and general elections to give him a mandate for a ‘de jure’ one-party State. But in the run-up to the elections party leaders met with strong opposition. When ZANU-PF and ZAPU-PF reached a unity agreement in 1987, their leaders agreed that the ‘united’ party would seek to establish a one-party State. However, the events in Eastern Europe and African countries such as Liberia and Benin have caused people to ask why Zimbabwe should travel down the road other countries are abandoning. The ruling party’s instinctive response to opposition has been to use the powers of the State to suppress dissent. The strikers and demonstrators have been suppressed, but the voices of discontent rumble below the surface. Ref.