‘Minister remarks on demolitions insincere’


Zanu PF minister has strongly condemned the ongoing demolitions of “illegal structures” along Airport Road, which apparently were directed by party leader President Robert Mugabe late last year.


Mugabe ordered the demolitions, shortly before going on his annual leave, saying the structures were unsightly and portrayed the country in bad light among tourists using the road.

Tourism minister Walter Mzembi and Mugabe’s nephew,Robert Zhuwao have described the demolitions as bereft of human empathy, but analysts described the ministers’ sense of compassion as insincere.

Mzembi, in a Facebook post on Sunday, said Harare City Council should have exercised “compassion and empathy” to the affected residents.

He said in Europe, where he was on government business, it was not permissible to evict anyone in winter even when they were in arrears. “The same compassion and empathy should have applied in this rainy season . . . especially for the victims on the receiving end of a system we must interrogate on how things ended up like this,” reads part of the post.

Walter Mzembi etched

Mzembi went on to challenge urban planners “to do a quick benchmark of airport locations worldwide to see if they are in upmarket areas, industrial areas or slums as in the case of India”.

“Let’s get to the bottom of this technocratically and see if our urban planning assumptions are still relevant in 2016. Some of the houses destroyed really looked beautiful to an extent where if they were imposed in other airport environments in the world, it would fly in the face of our housing for all campaigns . . . COH (City of Harare) needed to exercise restraint while we put our thinking and compassionate caps on,” he said.

Zhuwao said: “This is heart-breaking. I don’t know the families affected by these demolitions. Even if one is to say all these structures were illegally built, these people, who are strangers to each other, did not end up on these stands through collusion. Surely, council and government need to help these families who are victims of circumstances.”

Analysts yesterday blasted the two ministers, accusing them of hypocrisy.

“Those are crocodile tears coming from the two Cabinet ministers. They should have raised the issue in Cabinet and elicited a public response from their colleague (Saviour Kasukuwere), who runs the Local Government ministry,” analyst, Takura Zhangazha said.

“These are not the first demolitions to occur in Harare. They should be consistent and principled in their approaches as opposed to seeking vainglorious public sympathy in the aftermath of a cruel act by officials who operate under the directive of the government.”

Blogger, Blessing Vava said the ministers were insincere.

“It’s just politicking. The Harare City Council is dominated by the opposition and obviously Zanu PF is trying to act clean and sympathetic since most of these housing co-operatives are controlled by Zanu PF thugs.”


  1. Manyenyeni whatever that means is heartless, we are dealing with individuals who don’t have people at heart-be warned you councillors there is a God up there. This country needs an overhaul of leadership, people have suffered enough.

    • You obviously and conviniently forget that it was you First Secretary and President Robert Gabriel Mugabe who publicly condemned the settlements. He even put Kasukuwere and Chombo on the spot for allowing that settlement to take shape there. Remember it’s Zanu PF aligned Housing Cooperatives that sold land to unsuspecting but gullible citzens.

  2. I want to believe the two ministers are very sincere but we have some people who just want to be on record for the wrong reasons, how does the guy who drives the grader sleep at night after such a diabolic execution -what eg.o. Whatever a man sows, he shall reap the benefits-be warned-City Fathers

    • The driver is just doing a JOB, like you. Usataure zvisina basa. You now want to blame the driver….seriously?

      • Enzo Shumba what has the driver got to do with this. instead of blaming the real criminals behind this whole this wakuti nanga nanga nadriver…hahaha unoshamisa

        • Thats True there.. the driver is an innocent man under orders to do the Job, surely he cant quit coz they “ordered” him to do that, if he does.. then what.. what, they simply get another driver whose kids are truely hungry!

    • Enzo Shumba, would you blame the undertaker for burying your beloved relative. Simply doing his job, taking instructions from the superiors. The driver has done nothing wrong here.

      • Those pple are jst heartless. Y dd they leave thm building those houses. Who sell those stands to thm.,bcz they ddnt jst build th houses they buy th land too . Th question is frm who and wt is th gvmnt doing abt it bcz thy are theives who still frm th poor. They shld jst stop thm frm buildng those hses frm th foundation. Nt to wait until they finish thn destroy. Bt there is God in heaven

  3. The one who drove the grader Enzo Sibanda works on instruction and he will sleep as normal. Had he not carried that instruction he was going to be disciplined or even dismissed from work. The blame is squarely on City council. They should not have waited until people complete building. City council has inspectors on the ground who supervises all stages of projects. Action from the city fathers was supposed to be taken long back not now. All this suffering could have been avoided.

  4. Get your facts right! The other comment was a Facebook statement by Robert Zhuwao and not Patrick Zhuwao the minister.

  5. How can you blame the city of Harare for these demolitions is it not the President of the country who questioned the placing of a residential place adjuscent to the airport. Why shooting the messenger , wake up and see the light Zimbabweans

  6. The problem with Zimbabwean is they don’t want to come out open the local gvt minister have the answer to all these rot.

  7. When Mugabe ordered the demolitions, any government in its right mind would have considered all moral avenues in order to reach an amicable decision. Those two fools crying over spilt milk should take their leader to task in parliament (if at all he attends) rather than bother us with their crocodile tears. To hell with them and their leader.

  8. Nyaya yamataura yandishamisa zvikuru. Igaroziva kuti mai mukadzai wababa. Aya ndomaitiro eZanu chaiwo atiri kuti isu, chinja maitiro ako iwe. Those houses tikada kuzvitsvaga, green light was shown for those people to construct them. Today its an eyesore. Nxa. Anyway, God is watching form a distance.


  10. I think Zanu PF, the HCC and the MDC-T are in collusion in this regard. Infact, Infact, the facts on the ground speak for themselves. Now they are playing the throw-catch game with other people’s wellbeing.

    If, to quote from Obert Gutu (http://www.newzimbabwe.com/news-27352-Demolitions+Ncube+blames+Tsvangirai/news.aspx),ZANU is to blame, where does that leave the MDC dominated HCC? Remember, the HCC Mayor and Majority councillors are MDC-T. As such, they had the power to veto a directive from the government….. even if it may have resulted in them being sacked enmass or relieved of their duties for failing to executive a demonic ministrerial directive. They would definitely have gone down in history books as men of the people who could not sacrifice their humanity and unhuism. That comrades, would have qualified them (MDC-T) to be called a People’s Party. Maybe, they know which side of their bread is buttered. I lEAve that to them and their conscience.

    Now, on our highly educated good doctors: Mzembi and Zhuwao: I have 2 statements for you.
    1. Crocodile tears.
    2. Stop singing/ dancing for the gallery. Don’t voice your concerns on the social platform: you know where the chief architect of this evil deed,Robert stays- tell him how youu feel.

    If you are reaaly touched and you dont agree with the ZANU PF position in this matter as you claim, why don’t you do something about it? How about resigning in protest for starters?

    Our God is a God of small things as well. No wonder mvura haisi kunaya (Its not raining). God in His wisdom feels for the little people as well. If it rains and they have no roof over their heads, where will they go?

  11. Mazimba kupedza kuba mari yose kwava kuti sporo kunoidyira kuma former colonial masters kkkkk y cant u spent the holiday here

  12. The order emanated from the number one citizen cascading down to the mayor Benard Manyenyeni.Considering the way our policy makers work,it is again possible that when the city fathers tried to restrain the developers from putting those beautiful structures,they might had been prevailed upon by some of those in high places ostensibly,for short political gains.It is common practice,that the windfall of residential stands are available during election time and managed by various unregistered housing cooperatives that equally proliferate during election time, carrying names of the innocent departed heroes so as to carry some resemblance of legitimacy.Unfortunately people do not learn from such painful lessons,come election time, offices of housing cooperatives would be full time in any open space of the Greater Harare area charging admin fees for the application of stands which don’t exist and unknown by the local authority.

  13. These pretenders who include a close kin to the president had enough time to convince him the merits and demerits of such an action if really they had the will of the people at heart. Look at the losses incurred. Moreover, was the department of planning within the city council not involved during the construction? All avenues of justices should have been been exhausted before arriving at that heartbreaking conclusion. Lets have a human heart for once.

  14. ma zimbo mino shamisa you are blaming city council for this?asinga zive how zanu pf works ndiani.hapana kwatino svika ne mentality yakadai.at this rate zanu ichatonga kusvika madhongi amera nyanga if we dont open our eyes and start analysing things.do you honestly believe mdc led council could have managed to halt consntruction on that settlement.indava vanhu muchiita kunge makatanga kugara mu zim nezuro

  15. Robert Zhuwawo is not a cabinet minister.This level of journalism is pathetic.Out of many,these two at least showed sympathy,unlike any of the ruling party and opposition cockroaches.

  16. I would want to thank you for most sincerely for your contributions ,the reason why we elect councillors is for them to represent us the voiceless-in fairness they should have resisted and they would have gone down in history by refusing to carry out the inhumane order. I still believe who ever took part in these demolitions is an accomplice, I will ask the same question what is Manyenyeni’s role in council?? What a dangerous and loose cannon we have as head of the City.

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