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Kazembe’s visit to UAE surveillance expo ahead of 2023 raises eyebrows


Home Affairs minister Kazembe summoned as tempers flare up



HOME Affairs minister Kazembe Kazembe (pictured) has been summoned to Parliament to issue a ministerial statement on what the police is doing to clamp down on perpetrators of political violence targeting opposition Citizens’ Coalition for Change (CCC) officials and activists ahead on next year’s general elections.


 The development comes as political tempers have flared of late, with latest cases being reported in Insiza where Bulawayo proportional representation legislator Jasmine Toffa was assaulted while campaigning for by-election slatted for this week.

Zanu PF violence on the opposition was also reported in Matobo and Mberenga. In Matobo, several officials of the main opposition CCC like Whange Central MP Daniel Molokele and party organising secretary Amos Chibaya had to scurry for cover after Zanu PF thugs used live ammunition to scuttle their campaign.

Earlier on, in Insiza where there is a local council by-election, the CCC campaign team was attacked and four of their vehicles dam[1]aged, with tyres deflated, window panes as well as screens smashed while engines were filled with sand.

Some valuables, including money and cellphones of the CCC, were confiscated by the suspected Zanu PF thugs. The political situation was further made tense by a leaked recording of former State Security minister Owen “Mudha” Ncube who, while addressing party supporters in Mberengwa, warned that next year’s pre-election period will be drenched in blood worse than the 2008 period.

In the 2008 era which Ncube makes reference to, founding MDC leader Morgan Tsvangirai had to pull out of the presidential election run-off due to the heightened bloody violence that claimed hundreds of lives.

 The decision to therefore summon Minister Kazembe to issue a ministerial statement on the ongoing violence was arrived at in Parliament on Wednesday this week after the CCC legislator for Budiriro, Costa Machingauta, made the request citing rising cases of political violence which began in Mbare recently.

“On 29th September 2022, in this august House, I raised an issue with regards to politically motivated violence and requested the honourable minister of Home Affairs, Kazembe Kazembe, to bring a ministerial statement into this august House to inform about the roadmap towards free and fair elections touching sections 155 to 157 of the constitution, section 66 of the constitution which speaks to the same as well as 67 of the constitution that address that issue.”

“I also asked him to look at section 219 that addresses the conduct of the police services as they transform from police force to police services. We have realised that there are now issues coming up where there are reports of politically motivated violence. We want peace in this country,” he said.

Earlier on, the CCC legislator for Glen Norah, Wellington Chikombo, had cornered Justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi in his capacity as leader of the House.

“My question is: What have you done as government to make sure that you bring those perpetrators of violence to book because what happened last weekend in Matobo is reminiscent of Gukurahundi where women were subjected to torture and there is banditry and insurgence that is taking place in this country?”

“Is it just an issue of talking through ZTV and other platforms or it is about walking the talk? The issue of violence is rearing its ugly face across and we cannot fold our hands and stand akimbo when such an increase continues unabated. What have you done as of now to make sure that you bring those culprits to book?” asked MP Chikombo.

 Ziyambi tried to downplay the matter, saying everything was being done by the police to arrest the perpetrators, but Mutare Central MP Innocent Gonese would have none of it, particularly when the minister said MP Chikombo had been “excitable” by equating the violence to Gukurahundi.

 “I believe in those circumstances, it is not proper if the police are being accused of being partisan, but it is because so many cases have been reported and no action has been taken.”

“When we are looking at a situation where — he (Ziyambi) might not be privy to the images which honourable members on the left have seen, I have seen pictures of honourable Toffa. I have seen pictures — yes, it is important. When responding, the honourable minister should be sensitive. The point I wish to emphasise is that when the minister of Justice is responding, he must also appreciate that we are dealing with a very sensitive subject. He may not be aware of some of the information.”

“Reference to Gukurahundi emanates due to the fact that when Gukurahundi occurred, you are very aware that initially it was just dismissed. Later on, our late President acknowledged that mistakes had been made. I want to say, in the case of Mark Chavunduka and Ray Choto, we had a situation where the late honourable minister Moven Mahachi said that the two had scratched themselves when there was clear evidence that they had been tortured at the hands of officers in the army,” said MP Gonese.

 Norton MP Temba Mliswa also seconded the proposal to summon Home Affairs minister Kazembe over cases of political violence which he said had become worse by sucking in legislators like MP Toffa.

“This is an honourable member of Parliament we are talking about, who was beaten up and prior to the prayer from the honourable member was that it be investigated thoroughly. We cannot have us as MPs being beaten up despite which side. It hurts us. We represent people. When we are here you (Ziyambi) must know we represent people…Why is the law not taking its course in a fair and just manner?” asked Mliswa.

 Speaker of Parliament Jacob Mudenda subsequently ruled that Minister Kazembe prepare a ministerial statement.

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