Samuel Kadungure and Luthando Mapepa—
ZANU-PF Manicaland provincial youth chair Cde Mubuso Chinguno yesterday came under fire from party youths who staged a demo in Chipinge accusing him of misappropriating funds mobilised to survey and service residential stands. The stands were allocated to youths in Chipinge. Although President Mugabe had counselled youths to consider building flats, it is not clear how the land stretching 300 hectares was allocated to the youths for residential stands in Chipinge under Cde Chinguno’s watch.
The angry youths besieged the party’s district offices demanding Cde Chinguno’s censure over the alleged abuse of funds. The placard-waving and toyi-toying youths also called for investigations into the operations of two companies (names supplied) that were supposed to do the tuck survey, pegging of the stands, road servicing and installation of water on about 2 200 stands.
It is alleged that the two companies are owned by Cde Chinguno and his proxies. The protesters were led by Cde Mubuso’s deputy Cde Harrison Tuso and provincial youth league members, Cdes Memory Baiwa, Elisha Madhlazi and Douglas Chibhamu. Cde Betty Dhliwayo, who is a member of the Zanu-PF national Youth League took part in the demonstration.
About 21 youths allegedly lodged complaints to the police and Manicaland deputy police spokesperson, assistant inspector Luxon Chananda, could neither confirm nor deny the developments. “I need to verify the statistics with those on the ground in Chipinge before confirming,” he said.
“Once I get the facts I will get back to you informing you which office to contact.” Some of the placards read: “Mubuso Chinguno pasi newe, mastands akafirwa: Mubuso hatichada, enda kanyi kwako kuna Mutezo, mbavha iyi: Pasi nembavha tode mare dzedu, uori kwete help us President Mugabe.”
The youths said at least 2 500 people paid the developers $10 registration fees each in the district, but only 500 stands were partially serviced. The youths further alleged that Cde Chinguno forced registered youths to pay monthly subscriptions of $35. Ward 24 youth chairperson Cde Tonderai Ngwendu fell into a trance while addressing the crowd.
“In my ward there is chaos as close to 6 000 youths were duped to believe that they will get the stands and are knocking on our doors every day demanding their stands,” he said.
“They had been religiously paying monthly subscriptions and remember we have relatives who perished in an accident on their way from the official launch of these stands on September 25, 2016.” Cde Dhliwayo accused Cde Chinguno of tarnishing President Mugabe’s name in Chipinge through his corrupt behaviour.
“We are taking all the grievances raised by youths upwards. Mubuso should be censured because he is tarnishing the name of President Mugabe and we are simply saying enough is enough. He has tarnished the party’s name in Chipinge and Chimanimani. We cannot fold our hands while the cancer spreads. “We need the party to move in and sort out the mess created by Mubuso. This is the only way to renew the youths’ hope and loyalty to the party,” said Cde Dhliwayo.
Cde Chinguno denied the allegations, saying his hands were clean. He said the demo was orchestrated by his internal political rivals. “Those were not genuine youths, but hired thugs and touts,” he said.
“Our list has 2 200 stands and so far only $89 460 has been paid. I do not know where that amount ($160 000) is coming from. This is factionalism at play as we head towards the extra-ordinary National People’s Congress. Work is in progress and work is on/off because the subscriptions are coming in drips. Only 42 people are up to date and the rest are not paying.” He said he would welcome any investigation into the matter either by the party or Government.