By Robert Tapfumaneyi
ZANU PF youths have hauled over the coals, party legislator and lawyer Jonathan Samukange for offering his legal services to former party rival Saviour Kasukuwere who is being accused of corruption.
“We have been inaudited with questions about Mr Samkange’s political standing and we will continue to seek answers to those questions,” said the party’s Youth League in a statement Thursday.
Kasukuwere is a former Zanu PF political commissar who was among a handful top officials who were elbowed out of the party when then Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa orchestrated a coup against the now former President Robert Mugabe and his G40 backers November last year.
He has since been dragged to court on four counts of abuse of office charges.
However, Mudzi South MP, Samukange has infuriated the party’s youth wing through offering his services to the former Local Government Minister.
Said the youth league, “It is morally and politically irreprehensible for him (Samukange) to stand up and associate himself with our President and First Secretary while at the same time fighting to release those, we as a party led by HE are fighting to end corruption.”
Kasukuwere appeared in court early this week and is out on $3 000 bail.
But Zanu PF youths find everything wrong with Samukange over alleged attempts to throw spanners in the wake of a party bid to fight corruption as enunciated in its 2018 election manifesto.
They insist they will not sit idle and watch an MP who was elected on the same principles turning around to defend someone accused of corruption, even so, a party enemy.
“Fighting corruption is one of the stated objectives of the party as stated by our campaign manifesto and he, Cde Samkange ran with that manifesto too or perhaps he didn’t,” said the youths.
“Now that we have a person arrested under same charges, for him to actually represent and defend corrupt people or people arrested on corruption does bring into question not only his personal credibility but his political and moral standing.
“We castigated opposition members such as Job Sikhala for representing former Zanu PF members arrested on graft charges, not because we wanted to see them in jail but because we argued it doesn’t not make sense to stand in Parliament and in public and accuse one of being corrupt and then go to court and represent him against same charges.
“So now, as we hereby do, we demand that Mr Samukange state where he stands politically, what his principles and allegiance are.
“It now looks like we arrest people with our left hand and release them with our right hand, and that does not look good at all.
“He must come out in the open and say if he isn’t for Zanu PF and certainly not for our fight against corruption. It’s morally and politically irreprehensible for him to be representing such people and how does it look to the world?
Samukange has insisted his controversial client was “innocent until proven guilty” hence he had the right to be represented by anyone, including himself.