Bulawayo governor and Zanu PF national deputy spokesperson Cain Mathema is an “unelectable fellow who survives on political praise-singing and idolising his political gods” the MDC has charged.
The Welshman Ncube-led party made the scathing attacks on Mathema following the latter’s verbal assault on its leader over Ncube’s suggestion that Bulawayo host Parliament business. MDC national spokesperson Nhlanhla Dube yesterday said:
“Mathema is a prefect of his political handlers in the capital and does not in any way speak or fight for the interest of the province that he was appointed to represent.
“While the MDC respects the fact that Mathema is an unelectable fellow who survives on political praise-singing and idolising his political gods, we believe it is once again unfortunate for him to continue to pretend to be blind to the glaring marginalisation and poverty that is evident in the lives of the people of Matabeleland just to protect his failing political office.”
Dube said Mathema’s ignorance of politics was “amazingly shocking”.
He added: “To us it is again a case of political desperation that has driven Mathema to the lowest levels of political imbecility.”
The MDC, he said, supported the relocation of Parliament as it would help legislators appreciate the region’s level of marginalisation.
“We urge Mathema to hold his candle high if he has any, than to attempt to blow out Ncube’s political light for he will not succeed. People of this country know who their heroes are and will not buy these lies and cheap politicking from a record sell-out,” he said.
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Weekend State media reports quoted Mathema describing Ncube as “daft and stupid” over the Parliament building issue.
Said Mathema: “He (Ncube) is daft and stupid. Where in the world have you seen that happening? The trend the world over is that parliament is based in the capital city. This is just a cheap way of trying to win votes from Matabeleland, which will not happen.
“This is all part of the devolution idea meant to divide the people. It is reactionary and serves to emphasise the divisions that exist,” said Mathema. Last Friday, Mathema allegedly stirred another hornets’ nest when he used the same words “daft” and “stupid” to describe regional politicians and civic society leaders pushing government to compensate victims of the Gukurahundi massacres.
“Why should they be compensated when we had the 1987 Unity Accord?” Mathema asked while giving a public lecture at the Midlands State University in Gweru.
“That unity was enough and there is no need for compensation. Those that talk about Gukurahundi want to act as if there were Shonas butchering the Ndebeles when it was the Britons who were butchering the people of Matabeleland and the Midlands to create disharmony,” said Mathema.
His remarks were in contrast to calls by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai two weeks ago for the crafting of legislation to compel government to compensate victims of State-sponsored violence, including the Gukurahundi atrocities.
An estimated 20 000 people were killed in the region between 1982 and 1987, mainly by members of the Fifth Brigade who were deployed by President Robert Mugabe’s government, ostensibly to deal with the dissident menace.