BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
ZIMBABWE Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc) commissioner Gabriel Chaibva has denied ownership of a Twitter account in his name which recently carried an offensive tweet.
This came after the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) threatened to file a US1 million defamation lawsuit against him over the alleged tweet.
The tweet implied that the human rights body was organising civil unrest
“I regret to advise that this is one of the many social media platforms which purport to be me when, in fact, they are ghost accounts,” Chaibva said in a letter to the ZLHR.
“I am advised that they have been many more handles which have been opened in my name with old pictures of me. The picture appearing on the Twitter handle complained of was taken in 2008 and appeared in a news broadcast on ZBC TV when I was interviewed. It is on the internet.
“The other pictures which have appeared on the Twitter handle were taken in July 2019 at the State House swearing ceremony, while those pictures are of me; it is not my Twitter handle. Therefore, be informed that the Twitter handle you are complaining of is a ghost account and I am not in any way associated with it,” he added.
In the alleged offensive tweet, Chaibva is said to have claimed that civil society groups such as the Crisis Coalition Zimbabwe, Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe and ZLHR were planning engage politically motivated violence in the coming few days.
ZLHR, through lawyer Tinomuda Shoko, said: “The information you posted in your tweet is false in every respect and is calculated as it damages the reputation and standing of the ZLHR.
“While we appreciate that there is a constitutionally guaranteed right to petition peacefully, the organisation has never called or supported any protest, and the organisation’s communication portals are evident of such. There was no single incident where ZLHR has sent any information to any organisation or published any information calling for a stay away, and does not intend to do so.
“The information which you posted on your tweet is not only false, but highly defamatory in that it creates an impression in the minds of any reasonable person that the ZLHR are masterminds and instigators of political violence and civil unrest.”
ZLHR the demanded that Chaibva should retract the statement or face a US$1 million defamation lawsuit.
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