MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s uncharitable assessment of the Zanu PF government’s performance has touched a raw nerve in President Robert Mugabe’s party with Information, Media and Broadcasting Services minister Jonathan Moyo taking another dig at the leader of the official opposition yesterday.
Moyo charged that only President Robert Mugabe had the mandate to deliver a ‘state of the nation’ address.
Speaking on the sidelines of a Zanu PF Matabeleland North provincial coordinating committee meeting in Lupane, the minister said Tsvangirai was trying to divert attention from his personal problems.
He accused the media of giving Tsvangirai undeserved attention following his statement delivered in Harare on Friday. The MDC-T
leader had said the economic crisis in the country was worsening and called for political dialogue to address the problems. But Moyo said Tsvangirai had no mandate to make the pronouncements as he was rejected by Zimbabweans in the July 31 elections.
“In the first place that was not the state of the nation address,” he said.
“A state of the nation address can only be given by the head of state and government and commander-in-chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces and you can only be a Head of State and government and commander-in-chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces by winning an election,” he charged.
“In order to give an address of the kind you are talking about, you have to have the vote of the people of Zimbabwe.
“Tsvangirai tried, that is public knowledge on July 31 last year, but was resoundingly rejected by the people so let’s put that aside.”
The Zanu PF politburo member said the media should not get carried out away by Tsvangirai’s address.
“When one of the 13 million Zimbabweans chooses to exercise that right, the rest of us, especially you in the media do not have to get carried away and overly excited as if there is something important going on,” Moyo said.
“We know that on December 19, the Finance and Economic Development minister Patrick Chinamasa, presented a national budget for this year 2014, that budget is before Parliament.
“Anyone who has anything useful to say about our national budget has to say it in Parliament.
“I would like to think that we all know that even though the MDC-T and indeed the other one as well were resoundingly defeated in the past election, they have some representation in Parliament.
“They are the opposition in Parliament, if they have the courage of their views as a party, we would expect them to express those views in Parliament.”
Moyo said Tsvangirai was using a wrong platform to address problems he was facing in his marriage and in the MDC-T.
“He is seeking to address those issues using the wrong forum. You do not invoke national issues, budget issues, as a way of attending to understandable bedroom problems and challenges in his party,” he said.
“I do not think as a matter of fact anything that the leader of the embattled MDC said yesterday (Friday) deserves the kind of attention that you are trying to give it.
“I think those were mutterings of a very disturbed person who needs our sympathy, who needs our understanding.
I think the majority of Zimbabweans sympathise with the difficulties that he is allegedly having in the bedroom.
“You wouldn’t want anybody to go through these kinds of problems but I do not think it’s the right thing for him to seek to address those problems making all sorts of outrageous claims that have no basis in any reality,” Moyo added.
Tsvangirai had warned that Zimbabwe faced a tough 2014 and proposed dialogue to stop the economic downturn.
The address that was postponed on Tuesday following the death of President Robert Mugabe’s sister Bridgette was well attended.