HARARE- Zanu PF reacted bitterly to the decision by Zimbabwean radio legend Ezra ‘Tshisa’ Sibanda to throw his hat in the political ring and stand as an MDC-T parliamentary candidate in his rural home of Vungu in the Midlands Province.
As exclusively revealed by Nehanda Radio.com on Saturday the legendary former ZBC Radio and TV personality was back in Zimbabwe over the Christmas holiday and spent time consulting with the MDC-T provincial leadership and other senior party leaders including National Organising Secretary Nelson Chamisa.
A day after our exclusive story the Zanu PF controlled Sunday Mail newspaper responded with an article entitled ‘Former DJ eyes MDC-T parly seat’ in which they astonishingly claimed Sibanda’s decision to enter politics and run on MDC-T ticket was “engineered by British intelligence agents.”
The newspaper wrote that “it is understood Sibanda’s expected entry into MDC-T structures was engineered by M16 agent David Banks during Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s last visit to the UK.”
The Sunday Mail claimed “Sibanda who does political shows for the pirate radio station SW Radio Africa, is positioning himself for a parliamentary seat in order to enhance his relationship with the former Rhodesian agents. Some of his friends to whom he may sell secrets include Conor Walsh, Derrick Smail and Geoff Hill.”
The paper also claimed “Hill is a former CIO agent in the Smith regime who turned into a journalist but is known to have kept his links with the Western intelligence services. Small is a flamboyant MI6 agent masquerading as a media proprietor and has shares in The Daily News.”
According to the Sunday Mail “The MDC-T intends to field former radio 2 (now Radio Zimbabwe) disc jockey Ezra “Tshisa” Sibanda as its candidate for the Mpopoma parliamentary seat in national elections scheduled for this year in a move reportedly engineered by British intelligence agents”.
Not only did they get the constituency wrong they claimed that “sources within the party last week revealed that the United Kingdom based DJ recently met MDC-T Deputy President Thokozani Khupe, National Chairman Lovemore Moyo and Organising Secretary Nelson Chamisa in Harare to discuss his campaign strategy.”
The Sunday Mail claimed “Sibanda plans to embark on a massive campaign that includes a media blitz and musical shows. Sources said Sibanda had already briefed selected journalists in Bulawayo of the campaign strategy.”
Curiously the Sunday Mail did not put the Sibanda story on its website despite running it in the hard copy of the newspaper. The move suggests a deliberate attempt to block people from the diaspora particularly the UK where Sibanda is based from reading the story and its shocking allegations.
Speaking to SW Radio Africa journalist Lance Guma on the Behind the Headlines programme Sibanda said there was nothing to spy on in Zimbabwe. He said it was actually Zanu PF that had shown an appetite for spying when some of its officials were exposed by WikiLeaks as willingly giving out their secrets to US diplomats.
Asked if he was surprised by the article Sibanda said “yes I’d expected that but I didn’t expect that they would create something so serious which in Zimbabwe is treason. For someone to be a spy, you know what you are facing is actually a death sentence.”
“The idea is to scare me and the idea is to try to portray me as a bad person trying to sell out his country out to the so-called white Rhodesians. I know nobody; the list of people they mention there, I don’t even know anybody there, I only know David Banks because he has always been with the Zimbabwean communities.”
Asked if he would go back given the serious allegations against him Sibanda said “I’m going back to Zimbabwe anytime soon – that is my country and it will remain my country, I love the country so there’s no going back – I’m going to Zimbabwe.”
You can listen to Ezra’s interview with SW Radio Africa via this link