Drama as Mutodi clash with Monica Mutsvangwa, forces ZBC to delete tweet

Energy Mutodi

INFORMATION, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Deputy Minister Energy Mutodi has unleashed a barrage of attacks on his boss, Monica Mutsvangwa and her husband Chris, accusing them of abusing State-owned media for their own family’s benefit.

Mutodi further attacked the State-owned broadcaster, ZBC, of gross incompetence.

This was after ZBC published an article in which it quoted Foreign Affairs Minister Sibusiso Busi Moyo saying Government had nothing to do with a tweet by Mutodi last week in which he criticized Tanzanian President John Magufuli’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic in his country.

Responding to the tweet by ZBC, Mutodi wrote: “This shows gross incompetence at the ZBC and it also goes on to show how Monica and her husband Chris are abusing State media.”

Within moments of Mutodi’s outburst, ZBC went on to delete their own tweet, but several followers on the page had already copied it down.

Monica’s husband, Chris, is a leader of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) and also a former Special Advisor to President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Mutodi, who is not new to controversy, last week posted on Twitter suggesting that Magufuli had made a blunder by keeping churches in Tanzania open as that had resulted in the sharp rise of coronavirus cases.

“His Excellency John Pombe Magafuli’s Tanzania now has 630 COVID-19 cases with prayers but without a lockdown while His Excellency President ED Mnangagwa’s Zimbabwe only got 31 cases with lockdown and masks. An insight into how managers can be game-changers,” Mutodi said on 4th May.

However, SB Moyo says that is not the view of Government, as different countries were responding to the coronavirus differently depending on inherent circumstances in their respective nations.

“I make reference to the message of 4 May 2020 purported to have been posted on twitter by the deputy Ministry of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Honourable Dr E. Mutodi in which he compared the measures against COVID-19 adopted by the head of state of Tanzania and Zimbabwe,” SB Moyo said.

“I wish to make it clear that this statement does not reflect the government’s position nor policy. The government of Zimbabwe fully respects the sovereign measures that the President of United Republic of Tanzania His Excellence John Magufuli adopted to contain the spread of COVID-19 in his country.

“Taking into account the unique domestic environment and other factors prevailing on the ground, indeed, no two individual countries have the same set of environment and conditions to warrant the adopting of a uniform response to disease outbreaks and other crises.

“Each government is implementing policies that best suit their unique domestic environments in line with the guidelines of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

“The government is working in close partnership with SADC and African Union Member States as well as with other interested international co-operating partners to fight this global pandemic.

“In this context, there was no basis whatsoever, to compare the policies of the two Presidents,” said the former army securocrat. – Zimbabwe Voice