HARARE – Didymus Mutasa, the minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Monday slammed the State media for taking sides in the Zanu PF succession drama.
Mutasa, who is also Zanu PF secretary for administration, is particularly not happy with being portrayed in the state media as a “dwarf in huge robes.”
“Please stop it, leave us alone, please regard us as your leaders, we come from the people who voted for us, and the president. We want to work in harmony,” Mutasa told journalists at his government offices.
After a public fallout that saw party stalwarts Media, Information and Broadcasting Services minister Jonathan Moyo and party spokesperson Rugare Gumbo trade barbs, Mutasa said it was now time to build bridges.
“When comrade Moyo requested me to address you, I asked comrade Gumbo to come with me but he had to leave for China at 10am,” Mutasa told the news conference. “I also asked him (Moyo) to be with me here, but he is doing something else.
“They should have been with me here because they are the ones who need to reconcile for the benefit of the party and the country. There cannot be progress when there is disharmony.”
He said by taking sides in the Zanu PF wrangle, the public media had abdicated its role.
“I’ve been requested by comrade Moyo to meet you and clarify media reports that he was gagged by the Saturday politburo, I also took that opportunity to ask him why I am getting coverage from the public press now, why?
“Because, all along, we haven’t been allowed to speak to the public press, and I have only been covered in the Tsvangirai papers (private press). I also haven’t been covered well in the public press, even in pictures of the politburo I am cut-off, I don’t know who is to blame for this, but it is a very unfortunate thing as the public press has been used as instruments in the factional fights,” Mutasa said.
“I knew you didn’t want to cover me and have never cried, Manica Post always reports terribly on me and I never complained.”
He said the press conference was called as a result of a complaint lodged by Moyo.
Mutasa, who referred to himself as the chief executive officer of Zanu PF, denied media reports that Moyo had been gagged.
“The reports are untrue. The politburo did not gag comrade Moyo, if we do that we will be doing ourselves a disservice as Zanu PF and government because we need the ministry of Information to disseminate information on the Zim Asset (Zimbabwe’s economic blueprint),” Mutasa said.
He said measures taken by the extraordinary politburo meeting were meant to bring order in the party.
“All we are trying to do is to control that bull that has caused chaos in the kraal as that bull has caused others to retaliate,” he said