Tendai Biti already owns ‘Mnangagwa’ diplomatic passport

Lawyer Tendai Biti, former finance minister, speaks to journalists outside Zimbabwe's High Court in the capital Harare. File photo: REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo.

ZANU-PF legislator Kindness Paradza (Makonde) has accused his MDC counterparts’ snub of diplomatic passports offered by President Emmerson Mnangagwa government as a cheap publicity stunt as some of them were issued with the travel document last year.

Paradza, who is also the chairperson of the Foreign Affairs Parliamentary Portfolio Committee, announced in Parliament early this month that Mnangagwa had given a nod for all parliamentarians to be issued with diplomatic passports, but MDC MPs said they would not accept the offer.

The Makonde MP told NewsDay yesterday that it was unfair for the opposition leadership to deny other MPs passports yet they were beneficiaries of Mnangagwa’s generosity.

“Yes, it’s very true. He (MDC secretary-general Charlton Hwende) is a holder of a diplomatic passport. Not only him, but they are many. Hwende is denouncing the issuance of diplomatic passports to his fellow MPs, yet he is a holder of a diplomatic passport which he was issued by the same President. Actually, the same passport assisted him to get temporary refuge in Namibia after the January disturbances,” he said.

“(Other MPs who have diplomatic passports include) Dorcas Sibanda, Tendai Biti, Prosper Mutseyami, Paurina Mpariwa, Daniel Molokele, Concilia Chinanzvavana, Prince Sibanda, Anele Ndebele, Willis Madzimure, Gabbuza Gabuza, Murisi Zwizwai, Tapiwa Mashakada, Jasmine Tofa and Ruth Labode. They were given these passports last year, now they want to pretend to be holier than thou.”

Source – newsday