By-Chief Ephias Munodawafa Murinye has been unanimously voted by all Zimbabweans, including those in the diaspora, for the 2021 Man of the year award.
The candid and courageous Masvingo traditional leader challenged President Emmerson Mnangagwa to deal with corruption or risk losing the 2023 national elections.
Below is a letter from Masvingo Mirror explaining why Chief Murinye should be celebrated.
Chief Ephias Munodawafa Murinye is our man of the year for reasons which our readers may not have surmised. In a fit of anger, perhaps after some disrespect from fellow Philistines in the cabal to which he belongs, he burst out, spilling the beans.
Having lived a life of sin, he now finds himself seeking sympathy from the saints whom he persecuted while his fellow Philistines, like hunting dogs bay for his blood.
We have chosen him as our man of the year, not because he is a hero; God forbid. Murinye, by his own confession is a sinner of sinners, and in his moment of self-reflection, seeing a window of opportunity, seeks some redemption. We share his pathos (a quality that evokes pity or sadness), for even among the Philistines, a moment comes when self-reflection forces them to see the man in the mirror and images of past wrong doings pass by dimly as in Plato’s cave men story, the little conscience that is left is rekindled, peradventure angles may have mercy on his soul.
That is the story, and he is not alone.
We will go straight to the point. These Philistines, the evil genius Jonathan Moyo, the erudite Walter Mzembi and now our own Murinye have at moments of truth, met their maker and asked the eternal question.
What is man’s purpose on earth?
Before answering that question, let us lay down the issues that are not in dispute and which by his own mouth, Brother Murinye himself has attested.
During the period of 2008-2013 Murinye ran around like a madman, (aimhanya sebenzi) acting out and cutting up in a self-arrogated role of Commissar of Zanu PF in Masvingo province. Being Zanu PF to the core (his own words) he did some things which were beyond his calling as a chief. We know, and it has never been disputed, that in 2013, he removed protection from MDC tribesmen of his clan, harassing them and even persecuting them. We know from other human rights reports that between those years, 10 000 members of the MDC were murdered.
Thus, a chief who denies a resting place to members of his blood line, by rules enacted by our ancestors, abdicates his patrimonial role (fatherly role). To drive the matter home, it is unthinkable that no matter what transgressions I may make in the world, I have, as a last resort, the right to return to the patrimony of Chief Chashura of the Rainbird because I am of his chikuvhute (umbilical cord).
This is the sacred rule that keeps Africans from being homeless.
Are these rules not written in the chronicles of the Bantu, and in the hearts of the wisest among them?
Moved by greed and self-aggrandizement, his patrimony, being the smallest, wedged among the bigger paramountcy’s of Chief Charumbira and Chief Mugabe, he sought to gain a limelight by serving false gods and sacrificing the very people allocated to him by his ancestors to protect.
Fearing an electoral defeat of Zanu PF by the MDC Alliance group in 1913, he pre-emptied the possibility by “chucking out all known supporters from their homes” says a human rights report. In another report he harassed an MDC councillor A Busumani for building a clinic, helping fund a school building and doing good works for his community. Busumani ended up in a jailhouse on trumped up charges.
If I were to make a list of the sins of this Brother Chief, there would be no end to it. Suffice to say that Chief Murinye did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord.
Now our readers will say what my friend Fabian Mabaya has already told me. “Ken, thy much learning makes thee mad. Do you know that you are totally mad?”
The question must be asked. Why do these Philistines, from time to time burst out in total anguish, and utter words of regret, demanding a seat among the righteous?
Murinye says that he witnessed a Gonyenti (18-wheeler truck) carrying top-up fertilizer supplies back to Harare for disposal on the black market. He says that he warned the PROPO (Police Commander) and gave the details of the truck. Murinye did not get satisfaction.
In another case, his assistant, named Chiremba, observed fertiliser bags being off-loaded through classroom windows in the middle of the night, obviously purported for a clandestine destination.
He reported this incident but was not given satisfaction.
The reason he was not given satisfaction is that he came with dirty hands. He confesses that he was a beneficiary of a “grab farm” on the well water-shed slopes of the Great Zimbabwe escarpment. The geographical faults in that escarpment make room for perennial springs that were used by white farmers for wheat growing. His children also benefitted from “grab plots”.
In our research on the Life and Times of Robert Mugabe, we established the fact that there is a well-known hierarchy among the Philistines. A letter, written by former vice-president Joice Mujuru made it clear that among the Philistine the looting order was established according to levels occupied by the princes in relationship to Numero Uno (Mugabe). The letter revealed that Police Commissioner Augustine Chihuri came third among the princes who shared the loot associated with Marange diamonds. Whether the loot was shared with subordinates depended on the generosity of the princely figure.
Murinye, in our reading, comes far short of a princely status among the looters. His cutting up and acting out is therefore aimed at raising his status among the looting princes. He feels that he has not been properly rewarded for his hard work and sacrifices as a “devil commissar in Masvingo Province” for Zanu PF.
We must also mention that those acolytes who are at the bottom of the ladder and far away from the princely personages are worked literally to death. They willingly take this position and do the most horrendous deeds, foul and deadly, in the hope of being noticed and raised in rank up the ladder to a princely status. Unfortunately, without renewable leadership, and geriatrics in their eighties holding their positions well into the twilight zone, their careers in the looting business become riskier by the day.
The punishment for rebellion, or for exposing their secrets are well known. Murinye has accepted that: “They may kill me if they want. I am already dead anyway.” The punishments for exposing the party are well known. Are these not written in the chronicles of Joost Fontein in his book: Political Accidents in Zimbabwe (2018).
Murinye will be lucky to depart this world at the hands of a stupid fire at the seat of his patrimony at Mabwe Maviri Farm near Great.