ZANU PF has been accused of denying Binga villagers presidential inputs, accusing them of being MDC-T members, despite reports that they were forced to deliver their maize to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB) in Lusulu and have not been paid.
The situation was described as dire since the villagers have not planted this farming season because they could not buy inputs while their money was holed up at the GMB.
To add insult to injury, they were being denied inputs from the presidential inputs scheme, which were reportedly only being given to known Zanu PF supporters.
Councillor Themba Tonse Kujulu Mukombwe of Kabuba ward in Lusulu on Friday confirmed that villagers were being denied inputs which were only given to Zanu PF supporters.
“It’s a challenge because Zanu PF members are selectively issuing out inputs, saying their members were the only ones entitled to receive them since they were coming from president Mugabe,” he said.
“The inputs are from the government to farmers, but most of them (farmers) did not receive them, for the simple reason that they are MDC-T members.”
Mukombwe said almost four tonnes were delivered at Lusulu GMB depot, while two were distributed in his ward. He named two Zanu PF officials and an agricultural extension (Arex) officer, responsible for distributing inputs, but only to members of the ruling party.
Efforts to get a comment from the named Zanu PF officials and Arex officers were fruitless yesterday. Mukombwe said the situation had brought tension among villagers in Binga.
“We wonder why people are being segregated in that way?” he charged.
“As farmers of Lusulu, when we contribute grain to GMB we don’t contribute on the basis of party affiliation.
“We contribute because we want to contribute to the economy and such an attitude will not bring peace in Binga district as a whole.”
Mukombwe said since farmers had not been paid for grain deliveries to GMB, they could not buy inputs and this threatened food security in the district.
Binga has been lagging behind in development through neglect and has perennially faced hunger, without receiving food aid from the government.