Tendai Mugabe Senior Reporter
The Zanu-PF leadership should intervene and stop rogue elements that have intensified their nefarious agendas of destroying the party from within by abusing social media and discussing classified party secrets on public platforms.
The sentiments by the Zanu-PF secretary for the Youth League Cde Pupurai Togarepi come in the wake of frenzied tweeting by Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Jonathan Moyo who has been attacking fellow party members on social media.
Cde Togarepi told The Herald yesterday that Zanu-PF had mechanisms to deal with those who refused to toe the party line.
The call by the Youth League followed similar concerns by other progressive organisations that have expressed displeasure over the abuse of social media by senior Government and party officials.
Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association expressed its displeasure on the same issue and yesterday Police Commissioner General Augustine Chihuri weighed in saying abuse of social media might destabilise the country.
In his official capacity as Zanu-PF First Secretary, President Mugabe last year voiced his displeasure over the abuse of social media. He said party members should not seek to undermine each other using the Internet.
In an interview yesterday, Cde Togarepi said the intentions of those abusing social media were not clear.
Cde Togarepi said Zanu-PF had plenty platforms and organs to discuss party issues such as the Politburo, Central Committee and National Consultative Assembly among others.
“It is unfortunate and we are very worried at the continued abuse of these social media platforms,” he said.
“As Zanu-PF, we do not have a platform called Twitter, WhatsApp or Facebook.
“It is something we are worried about and we are struggling to stop our youths from abusing these platforms.
“The leadership of the party should sit down with those involved. If they refuse to listen, there are procedures to deal with them.” The more worrying aspect, said Cde Togarepi, was that the party does not know who controlled the servers of those social media platforms.
As such, he said messages posted on social media could be used by the party’s detractors to destroy the party in future.
“We don’t know who controls the servers of these platforms and to us it is a cause for concern,” he said.
If put to good use, Cde Togarepi said, social media platforms could be used to advance party programmes.
He said it was worrying when such platforms were being turned into cannons of assault on fellow party members.
He said President Mugabe spoke strongly against such abuse and bona fide party members should take heed.
Meanwhile, expelled Zanu-PF Mashonaland West chairman Mr Temba Mliswa yesterday attacked Prof Moyo for accusing Cde Chris Mutsvangwa of allegedly abusing his ministerial office after he convened a meeting of war veterans at the Presidential Guard barracks.
He said it was surprising that Prof Moyo reacted quickly on the matter yet he was yet to respond to allegations levelled against him. “It further surprises me that (Prof) Moyo has elected to rush to release a Press statement in attack of the aforementioned meeting and its purported agenda and yet I, and I believe the general populace, are still waiting with baited breath to be made privy of details pertaining to the good Professor’s alleged carnal persuasions,” he said.