ZANU PF factional fights took a nasty turn yesterday after one of the suspects implicated in the theft of six cattle donated to the party claimed that secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa had trumped up the stocktheft charges to fix her for spurning his sexual advances.
Report by Obey Manayiti
Manicaland provincial deputy chairperson Dorothy Mabika told the court through her lawyer Tinofara Hove the stocktheft charges levelled against her were trumped up.
Mabika (47) and her co-accused suspended provincial chairman Mike Madiro (49) face another charge of stealing 10 beasts donated for President Robert Mugabe’s birthday celebrations.
Mabika, who is on $150 bail, faces two charges of stocktheft and obstruction of justice in that she allegedly tampered with provincial party minutes as a way of concealing the theft.
Her lawyer said: “This is a case of political struggle and the accused is being used as a pawn of power struggle in Manicaland. You made an inappropriate sexual demand against her. You are persecuting her because she refused your sexual advances and also refused to join your camp.”
But Mutasa, who occasionally burst into laughter during the trial, denied the charge.
“It is within your imagination. I never made any proposal or any sexual advances and if she was thinking about that, then it is her own problem. If she loves me, then let her be open,” Mutasa said.
He said he related well with Mabika and regarded her as a fellow comrade.
Mutasa said as the party’s secretary for administration, he was supposed to have been briefed about all donations made to the party, adding that the donor was supposed to have been issued with a receipt as per party procedures.
He said the stocktheft allegations against Mabika only surfaced as police officers were investigating alleged misappropriation of donated funds from diamond mining companies.
He said his involvement in the investigations had been blessed by the politburo, adding that he had no personal vendetta against Mabika.
However, Mabika insisted Mutasa targeted her because she had refused to join his camp.
Mutasa is reportedly aligned to Vice-President Joice Mujuru’s camp which is fighting another faction allegedly led by Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa to succeed the party’s 89-year-old Mugabe.
Mabika chronicled a series of party meetings where she claims Mutasa deliberately avoided her.
At one time, she claimed Mutasa declared: “If a zebra refuses to share pastures with a buffalo, it will be gored”, which she interpreted as implying that she had to join his camp or face the consequences.
Mutasa’s totem is buffalo, while Mabika’s is zebra.
She added that at one of the meetings held at Mutare Polytechnic, Mutasa allegedly organised party youths to demonstrate against her where the youths openly chanted: “VP! VP! VP!” in reference to Mutasa.
Mabika said Mutasa targeted her to tarnish her image and block her from contesting in the forthcoming harmonised elections.
But Mutasa charged: “She must be alert. If there are power struggles in Manicaland, she should not be found in the circles because when two elephants fight the grass suffers and Mabika should not be found on the grass. The truth of the matter is that the accused stole the calves and before she stole, everything was fine.”
Charges against Mabika are that on September 7 2011, she received six dairy bull calves from Dawid Herculus Joubert and converted them to her own use. The cattle were meant for slaughter at a Zanu PF inter-district conference.
The trial continues today with several other witnesses expected to testify.
Mutare magistrate Sekai Chiundura presided over the matter while Christine Nyamaropa appeared for the State.