MPs blast Mugabe over killing
The weekend murder of a 12-year-old Headlands boy came under the spotlight in Parliament yesterday with MDC-T legislators fuming and blaming Zanu PF for the death, while labelling President Robert Mugabe a hypocrite.
During debate on the Presidential speech attended by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, MDC-T MPs said Mugabe was now too old and had no punch to the extent his supporters were no longer listening to his calls to stop political violence.
While not denying or accepting responsibility for the political violence that claimed the life of Christpowers Maisiri, Zanu PF MPs hit back at their MDC-T counterparts, accusing Tsvangirai’s party of being equally violent and citing the infighting within that party as evidence.
Zvishavane Runde MP Lawrence Mavima (Zanu PF) said he was disappointed by the MDC-T MPs who had labelled Mugabe a hypocrite.
“It is not his problem if people do not listen or implement what he says. The same can be said about Tsvangirai — he has spoken many times about peace, but we have seen violence happening in his party, but no one is calling him a hypocrite,” said Mavima.
Maisiri, a Grade Four pupil, was killed in an inferno on Saturday night allegedly caused by a petrol bomb. His father, an MDC-T official, said he was convinced local Zanu PF activists petrol-bombed the house in which his children were sleeping as they had warned him they would. Police have so far dismissed claims the fire was a result of arson, but have not given an explanation for the cause of the blaze which Maisiri said was started by what sounded like an explosion.
Zaka Central MP Harison Mudzuri (MDC-T) said he was surprised by police inaction. “In his speech, the President preached an end to violence, but he is not walking the talk and we are wondering if it is sheer hypocrisy, insincerity or gross indiscipline because the nation is experiencing horrific events,” he said.
Bulawayo South MP Eddie Cross (MDC-T) said he visited the Maisiri family and had been disturbed by the political violence perpetrated on the family since 2000.
“This is the ninth incident to happen to him. I visited him and his family and his suffering is unspeakable as it includes the rape of his wife for political reasons. In 2008, 20 000 homes were burnt throughout the country and these were homes of poor people. Violence must be condemned by this House,” he said.
Mwenezi East MP Kudakwashe Bhasikiti (Zanu PF) and Chiredzi East MP Abraham Sithole (Zanu PF) also condemned violence and said the perpetrators should face the full wrath of the law.
Glen Norah MP Gift Dzirutwe (MDC-T) said there were some (political warlords) who were bent on disregarding Mugabe’s calls for peace.
“Just yesterday I was doing a constitutional outreach programme in my constituency and it was disrupted by people from the President’s Office,” he said.
Chitungwiza South MP Misheck Shoko (MDC-T) also joined in and said the incidents of political violence showed there were some people determined to destroy the Global Political Agreement.
“No one is arrested and we now wonder if the President is still the Commander-in-Chief of the Defence Forces because we expect action on this violence. No investor will come to a country where there is political violence,” Shoko said.
Musikavanhu MP Prosper Mutseyami (MDC-T) said those who continued to defy the President’s call to end violence should come out clear on whether they had defected from Zanu PF.
“We have seen problems with regard to lieutenants in the security sector, who have gone astray and defied what the President said. The President should look carefully at his lieutenants or else they are listening to someone else whom the President does not know,” Mutseyami said.
Bikita South MP Jani Varandeni (MDC-T) said Mugabe was too old and his supporters defied his calls because they knew he was too weak to berate them.