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Mudede steps up bizarre campaign

Registrar-General (RG) Tobaiwa Mudede has warned women against using modern birth control methods, claiming they caused the birth of children with several deformities, large heads, as well obesity in women.

Registrar-General (RG) Tobaiwa Mudede has warned women against using modern birth control methods, claiming they caused the birth of children with several deformities, large heads, as well obesity in women. Veneranda Langa

Mudede instead says women should stick to traditional methods, like tying a tree bark around their waists and to use the withdrawal as a birth control method.

The RG was called to appear before the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Women, Gender and Community Development to explain his views, which many say border on quackery.

To prove his point Mudede dragged several of his female subordinates to testify before the committee and in sync with their boss, they agreed modern birth control methods were not suitable.

The female witnesses brought by Mudede claimed they experienced severe headaches, poor eyesight, lack of libido, obesity, nausea, chest pains, skin rashes, appetite increases, breast pain, cervicitis, acne, among a myriad other side effects of using birth control.

An elderly woman said she used to tie bark of a certain tree on her waist to prevent pregnancy.

Buoyed by the support of his subordinates, the irrepressible Mudede claimed family planning methods such as Jadelle, Depo Provera, Norplant and birth control pills were a plot by the West to limit African and Asian populations.

The RG said he had conducted extensive research on this topic with Richard Hondo, but the only problem with this, parliamentarians noted, was that the co-researcher was a soil scientist, with no background in reproductive health.

“These drugs have effects – not only on women, but on men and even animals in the bush – and their effects are deadly and have sent a fright to many people,” Mudede told bemused legislators. “Jadelle has 51 side effects, followed by Depo Provera and that is why I have brought witnesses before this committee to testify on the side effects they felt after taking the drugs.”

He claimed Norplant was banned 10 years ago in other continents, but women in developing countries like Zimbabwe were still using it.

The production of Norplant was stopped globally in 2008 and its predecessor, Jadelle, also known as Norplant 2, was approved in 2002 although it is not marketed in the US, meaning Mudede could be onto something.

“In the book we have written, we have raised the question of de-population, where Western countries are bent on curtailing the population of the darker races of the world,” he continued with his conspiracy theory.

“It has been a design of vested interests for a long time now to scale down populations in poor countries.”

Mudede claimed the plot to de-populate Zimbabwe started in 1972 when the then United States National Security Council director Henry Kissinger released a report detailing the need to de-populate the least developed countries.

“Certain birth control drugs are being exclusively distributed for use by lower class women – invariably black – in their country of manufacture, and indigenous women in the least developed countries, for example Norplant and Depo Provera,” he said.

“They are not offered to Caucasian women.”

Hondo claimed some of the side effects of family planning methods included severe glaucoma.

Mudede chipped in saying family planning methods caused cancers, and even birth of children with large heads and several deformities, as well as obesity, which was now observed in many women.

Mudede, has over the past year, been speaking out about contraceptives, insisting they were a Western conspiracy.

Chairperson of the committee, Biata Nyamupinga said his views, considering he was a senior public servant, had caused panic, with some women dumping family planning methods and falling pregnant. She demanded Mudede should name some of the researchers and scientists internationally and locally whom he had worked with to come up with his findings.

But Mudede refused to disclose their names, insisting they were very reputable.

He said Hondo, his co-author on the book Genetically Modified Organisms and Population Control Drugs in Developing Countries was a renowned soil researcher.