Connect with us

Support The NewsHawks


Zanu PF indoctrinates university, college lecturers



ZANU PF through its Herbert Chitepo School of Ideology this week imposed indoctrination lectures on university and college lecturers from across the country at Midlands State University (MSU)’s main campus in Gweru in sharp violation of the Public Service Act which stipulates that government employees must not be seen actively taking part in partisan political activities.


 A quotation from the MSU to the ministry of Higher Education shows that the government expected 1 000 lecturers to attend the indoctrination. The university quoted the government US$65 000 for accommodation, breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The lessons were held on Monday and Tuesday. Some of the academics who travelled to the Midlands capital for the workshop said they were forced to attend after strict orders from university administrators.

The development comes at a time the ruling party is conducting similar indoctrination lessons for members of the Zimbabwe Republic Police. The lessons started at Morris Depot in Harare in December before spreading to other parts of the country. Police are public employees who must not be involved in partisan political activities.

The Zimbabwean police has however been often accused of being partisan and assisting Zanu PF in elections by, among other undemocratic tactics, blocking opposition rallies.

During elections, police are usually deployed to violently crush opposition supporters, raising anxiety over ongoing indoctrination lectures.

The brainwashing of academics came after the Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology ministry’s permanent secretary, Professor Fanuel Tagwira, on 20 January wrote to all colleges and universities inviting them to the Zanu PF workshop held in Gweru.

Part of the invitation letter seen by The NewsHawks stated that each college or university in the country was supposed to send 20 lecturers to the ruling party workshop.

“The Chitepo School of Ideology will be having a workshop for University and College Lecturers at the Midlands State University Main Campus from 23-24 January 2023,” Tagwira wrote.

 “The school has prepared a Basic Orientation Course which is designed to offer ideological orientation to all sectors of the Zimbabwean society, ‘living [sic, leaving] no one and no place behind’ as directed by His Excellency, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Cde. Dr. E. D. Mnangagwa.

“It is against this background, that the Ministry is cordially inviting a maximum of twenty (20) members of staff from each institution to attend this very important workshop.”

 The letter, in a calculated bid to stamp its authority, was copied to Higher Education minister Professor Amon Murwira; the ministry’s chief director of human capital planning and skills development Professor Norman Rudhumbu; Dr Dennis Murekachiro, who is the ministry’s director for higher education programmes; as well as DC Damba, the director for tertiary education programmes.

The MSU provided accommodation and meals for lecturers who came from various parts of the country. These included Lupane State University, Great Zimbabwe State University, University of Zimbabwe, National University of Science and Technology, Chinhoyi University of Technology, and Chibhero Technical College.

Contacted for comment, Zanu PF spokesperson Christopher Mutsvangwa, confirmed the party had held the workshop.

He said it was important for lecturers and other civil servants to know the history of the ruling party through lectures from the Chitepo School of Ideology facilitators.

 “Zanu PF by dint of history is the custodian of this institutional memory of this great chapter in the rebirth of Zimbabwe. There is nothing which stops nationals, including voting civil servants, from taking interest in their history,” Mutsvangwa said.

He added that the workshop was meant to decolonise the minds of lecturers from Western media and social media.

“The complaints being raised belie an antipathy to the pan-African outlook of the ethos of the national liberation movements. Moreso when we have to decolonise the mind from the deleterious effect of imperial conquest. Same quarters don’t bat an eyelid to the onslaught by the Western media and its stranglehold on social media platforms,” he said.

A lecturer who attended the workshop said facilitators from the Hebert Chitepo School of Ideology clearly put it to participants that they must vote for Zanu PF and also urge their students to do so. “A lot of lecturers from my university gave various excuses on why they could not attend, which means that it was not a popular programme,” she said.

 “A few of us who came feared victimisation due to the political nature of the workshop. You could see a lot of disdain from majority lecturers who attended because they did not believe in the intended brainwashing, given their own vast knowledge of such issues like politics in Zimbabwe.” However, Mutsvangwa still defended the workshop.

“For clarity, the Zanu PF ideology has historical roots in the Chimurenga armed national liberation struggle of the 1960-70s. It challenged the settler minority racist political order of Ian Smith’s Rhodesian state,” he said.

 “It destroyed the Rhodesian military and replaced it with the freedom and democracy we enjoy. Patriotic Zimbabweans love their history of epic armed struggle and glorious victory. It’s their constitutional right.”

He claimed in countries like the United States such lectures by ruling parties in universities were normal.

 “I went to school and worked in US. There is an open season to teach citizens about the republican traditions bequeathed by George Washington and founding revolutionaries,” he said.

In the build-up to this year’s general elections, Zanu PF and President Emmerson Mnangagwa have been criticised for politicising professionals through creation of bodies like Teachers for ED, Nurses for ED, Doctors for ED, among others.

 Union leaders of those professions have condemned the politicisation of their members, saying many are forced to join the groups against the constitutional freedoms of association and assembly on one hand and breaking the Public Service Act on the other.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *