By Anna Chibamu
RULING PF Bindura South MP Remigious Matangira caused a commotion in Parliament Wednesday after alleging some members on the opposition benches were homosexual.
During a question and answer session as MPs debated the outbreak of measles in the country, Matangira and Buhera South MP Joseph Chinotimba defended some local churches who do not allow conventional medical treatment such as vaccinations for measles or Covid-19.
Some Apostolic sects do not allow their members to visit clinics or hospitals for treatment when they fall sick.
Zanu PF MP Josphine Shava had challenged government on what was being done to contain measles outbreak, saying many lives were being lost.
“What is government policy on the measles outbreak for those parents who did not take their children for vaccination? What is the government planning regarding such children because they are dying?” Shava said.
As legislators debated the issue, Norton MP Temba Mliswa stood up, proffering his thoughts on the matter.
“Can there be a public announcement through the national radio, television, et cetera when such an exercise is being done to make people aware and help officers including departmental heads in various districts to disseminate that information that every child is supposed to be vaccinated,” he said.
“It was the same again with Covid-19; other parents did not want to do that. We also talk about the very same constitutional provision of the right to life; that failure to do so, those parents will certainly face the full wrath of the law.”
This angered Matangira and Chinotimba who immediately defended the churches who do not recognise conventional medicines.
Pointing at the opposition bench, Matangira then shouted, “ikoko ndiko kune ngochani (there are homosexuals on the opposition benches). People’s churches should be respected.”
This angered Mliswa who demanded that the remarks should be withdrawn.
“Hon. Matangira should withdraw the statement that ‘uku ndiko kunogara ngochani’ we can also retaliate but please withdraw that statement. Ngochani ndiyani? Do not be a coward Hon. Matangira, shame on you!
“You say things that you cannot repeat even to your own children. You said it. Withdraw your words. Uri murume werudzii anorukwa musoro. Unoda kunyenga ani kuno? Hatikude nevhudzi rako iro isu. You lie to your family if you cannot withdraw that statement,” Mliswa responded.
Deputy Speaker Tsitsi Gezi intervened “Order, order! Hon. Matangira, may you sit down! Hon. Mliswa you have spoken so that I should give a ruling but now you want to be the Chair, again which is not fair on me as the Speaker. Why do you use emotions? Hon. Matangira, may you withdraw your words?”
Matangira then withdrew his statement.
“I said that people from that side support homosexuality. I did not say there are homosexuals in this House. Honestly speaking, we have a lot of people who are in jail but who did not commit any offence. Anyway, I withdraw my words.”