HomeLocal NewsSecurity agents scuttle Tsvangirai church visit

Security agents scuttle Tsvangirai church visit

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Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai was forced to cancel his scheduled visit to the Zion Christian Church (ZCC) Mbungo Shrine in Defe, Gokwe at the last minute after state security agents reportedly threatened and intimidated the church with unspecified action.
Tsvangirai was invited to address the ZCC’s annual conference at Defe Dopota at the weekend but the church cancelled the programme citing threats and intimidation by unnamed state security agents.
ZCC said state security agents ordered them to remove PM Tsvangirai’s name from the list of invited guests.
The issue became desperate when the church tried to resist the move. The church insisted that if PM Tsvangirai was stopped from addressing the congregation then no politician would be allowed to address them.
Vice President John Nkomo and MDC-M vice president Gibson Sibanda were among the invited guests.
The politicians were expected to address ZCC members on the on-going national healing and reconciliation process. The ZCC is one of the biggest churches in Zimbabwe and in the region.
PM Tsvangirai’s spokesperson James Maridadi, confirmed the last minute cancellation of the Gokwe meeting in the Midlands province after reports of intimidation and threats.
“Those reports have been received and a team from the Prime Minister’s Office has been dispatched to ascertain the authenticity of the reports. Only after they ascertain the authenticity of the reports then a position will be taken,” Maridadi said. The church said they had no choice but to cancel the programme because of the alleged threats and intimidation. “There was so much intimidation and we decided to cancel the programme and shelve it until further notice,” said a senior ZCC member, who did not want to be named.
“The security guys stopped the programme,” said another church member. “It looks like they did not want the Prime Minister to have contact with our church members.”
While PM Tsvangirai’s meeting with ZCC members was allegedly scuttled by security agents, last week President Robert Mugabe addressed the Johanne Marange Apostolic church at Mafararikwa in Marange to mark the sect’s annual Passover.
Clad in white robes, President Mugabe took the opportunity to castigate gays and lesbians saying their rights should not be recognised in the new constitution.
He told the Johanne Marange members there was nothing wrong with polygamous marriages because they were recognised under the country’s laws.
“Our Constitution allows polygamy. We will not force people into monogamous marriages. Inga muBhaibheri chaimo zvirimo. Solomon haana kungopihwa upfumi chete asi nevakadzi vakawanda (It is written in the Bible that (King) Solomon was not given riches only but also many wives.)” Senior MDC-T officials last night said a battle “to control the mind and soul of the church” had begun.

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