REPORTS that some Zanu PF MPs in Matabeleland South are blocking the party’s opponents from accessing agriculture inputs being distributed under an initiative spearheaded by President Robert Mugabe are disturbing.
It is worth noting that Zanu PF swept the entire contested parliamentary seats during the July 31 elections in Matabeleland South province and a witch hunt is not in the party’s interest at this point.
However, a meeting in Matobo on Tuesday heard that some MPs were excluding opposition MDC supporters from the scheme, which is meant to mitigate against the effects of drought.
Officials said the interference by politicians had slowed down the distribution of inputs and they now feared farmers’ preparations for the new cropping season would be derailed.
In some parts of Matabeleland South the rains have started and farmers are preoccupied with getting seed and fertiliser.
They have to be certain that Mugabe’s aid would reach them so that if they are excluded, the farmers could make alternative plans for the new season.
Matabeleland South provincial administrator Midard Khumalo should be commended for not mincing his words when he warned against the politicisation of the inputs.
This is a problem that has blighted Zimbabwe’s politics for far too long and would take bold leadership to nip it in the bud.
In the past there were accusations that Zanu PF officials excluded opposition supporters during the distribution of food donated by Mugabe.
The government should also take a tough stance against these unscrupulous politicians and make it clear that only civil servants can be in charge of the distribution of inputs.
The devastating drought has affected everyone whether Zanu PF or MDC and there is no need to discriminate when such relief efforts are being made.
Besides, Mugabe took an oath to be a president for everyone not just for Zanu PF supporters and the MPs need to be mindful of that when they conduct their business.