A Zanu-PF councillor in Buhera South, Manicaland province, is in the eye of a storm after villagers accused him of stealing fertiliser meant for distribution to villagers under the Presidential Inputs Scheme.
Ward 29 councillor David Chirinda was allegedly caught red-handed by some Zanu-PF youths at Chabata business centre in Buhera on Sunday morning.
Village head Passmore Chabata confirmed the development yesterday .
“We are worried because the councillor is yet to be arrested, but a police report was made at Birchenough Bridge Growth Point. We have a sad situation in Buhera South constituency in ward 29, where Chirinda was caught red-handed stealing presidential inputs. On Saturday, police and officials from the Grain Marketing Board came with some fertiliser at Chabata business centre and the inputs were supposed to be stocked at Mutisi shops,” Chabata said.
“Chirinda diverted all the fertiliser to his shop ahead of the distribution the following day. He took the keys and went home. We alerted some youths, including those from Zanu-PF, and at around 4am, he was caught opening the doors of his shop and stealing the fertiliser. I represent all traditional leaders and such people must be arrested.”
Villagers allege that Buhera South legislator Joseph Chinotimba (Zanu-PF) is defending the councillor.
Chinotimba yesterday, however, said: “I don’t want to be involved in the matter.”
Chirinda was not reachable for comment.
Manicaland police spokesperson Inspector Nobert Muzondo said they were still investigating the matter.
In an unrelated matter, an alleged land baron and Zanu-PF district co-ordinating committee member for Harare province, Spencer Mabheka has been fingered in fresh land invasions in the capital.
Harare ward 16 councillor Denford Ngadziore (Citizens Coalition for Change) exposed the issue, saying: “It has come to my attention that a group of politically-connected land barons held a meeting in which they resolved to proceed with another illegal invasion in various areas in Mabelreign, including Greenways at Haig Park, Meyrick Park, St Andrews Park, Cotswold Hills and Greencroft.
“True to that illegal resolution, they have proceeded to invade Greenways. They are doing this without any supporting documents as required at law.”
Mabheka, however, denied the allegations and accused Ngadziore of mudslinging him because they contested against each other in the 2018 elections.
“In a nutshell, I am a Zanu-PF district co-ordinating committee secretary for administration. I contested the 2018 elections for local authorities. I have been assisting people to get borehole water, and in 2015, I patched potholes and repaired boreholes in ward 16. I am not sure of what Ngadziore is talking about. He is only smearing my name because he thinks I will contest him again this year,” he said.
Allegations are that there is a ploy by the ruling Zanu-PF party to dangle land to the youths ahead of this year’s polls.