By Staff Reporter
HOME Affairs minister and prominent Zanu PF politician Kazembe Kazembe’s name has been sucked into the controversial arrest of party rival James Makamba who is vying to become Mashonaland Central provincial chairperson, a position currently being held by the hawkish top government official.
Makamba, a former journalist and businessman, was arrested last week and charged with violating Covid-19 regulations.
This was after the bearded tycoon-cum-Zanu PF politician had assembled a handful friends and relatives at his rural Mount Darwin home to celebrate his welcome.
Makamba lives out of the country.
Sources close to the saga told a local publication police had confided in Makamba they were under instructions from the minister to have him arrested for violating Covid-19 regulations.
“Police came and arrested Makamba accusing him of violating covid 19 regulations but they were pleading with him that they were sent by Kazembe on political grounds since he showed interest in contesting him in the looming provincial elections,” said the source.
Cases of powerful Zanu PF politicians using their influential government offices to settle political scores within the party are not new.
Aggressive Norton legislator Temba Mliswa claims to have been arrested 70 times during former police Commissioner General and avowed Zanu PF loyalist Augustine Chihuri’s tenure, often on trumped-up charges.
Chihuri was police boss until late former President Robert Mugabe was toppled in 2017.
Mliswa, a former Zanu PF Mashonaland West chairperson, says he went through hardship for some years as he was continuously arrested on the orders of Chihuri on charges of corruption, theft and assault.
“One of the worst times of my life was being accused by Chihuri of corruption. He was then working with Paul Westwood and I was arrested over 70 times,” Mliswa told journalists March last year.
Westwood is the former owner of a Karoi farm that Mliswa occupied at the height of the controversial government-backed land reform programme.