The love scandals that rocked Zanu PF: Part 5
By Lance Guma
Apologies for the delay in completing Part 5 of this series, which was due last Friday, but certain sections had to be researched further for accuracy. In this series I have deliberately focused on the love scandals within Zanu PF to provide context and expose the hypocrisy of them ‘casting the first stones’.
Drama fell over the past weekend like confetti at, or is it from Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai’s wedding to fiancée Locardia Karimatsenga Tembo. The PM says he found the woman he loves after three years of searching. This involved breaking up with about three women along the way.
His critics among them Zanu PF MP and ‘strategist’ Jonathan Moyo seized on those relationships to claim Tsvangirai had an “open zip and shut mind”. Wife bashing and prostitute loving black belt holder George Charamba who writes as Nathaniel Manheru also joined the criticism of Tsvangirai as a womanizer.
Jonathan Moyo (Tsholotsho North MP)
Several reports including one January 2010 article by veteran journalist and editor of The Zimbabwean newspaper Wilf Mbanga state that “Moyo is a man whose wife has taken him to court for beating her. He kidnapped his children and took them to Kenya in defiance of a High Court order.”
In January of 2003, Beatrice Moyo, (Jonathan’s wife) instructed her lawyers to sue The Daily News for Z$10 million (US$182 000) for damages allegedly caused by an article republished by the paper in Zimbabwe but which had initially been written by the Sunday Times newspaper of South Africa.
The article claimed Moyo beat up his wife while they were on holiday in South Africa. The paper also said that Moyo went on a shopping spree while in South Africa while millions of his countrymen faced starvation in Zimbabwe. Mrs. Moyo however claimed that the story was not true.
Mrs Moyo claimed there were disturbances among some guests who were in their hotel room on that new year’s eve, but denied that she called for the police to intervene nor that her husband beat her up. Sources close to the case claim the two had reconciled and the law suit was part of a damage control exercise.
Meanwhile the article by Mbanga says Moyo “has been accused of fraud not once but twice by the Ford Foundation in Kenya and at Wits University in South Africa. He left both reputable institutions under a cloud that has never been dispersed.” Mbanga also reminds us that:
“In the 1970s the cowardly Moyo fled from a Zanla training camp in Tanzania and sought refuge in the USA – a country he now purports to hate. He is nothing but a political prostitute who made his name as an arch critic of Robert Mugabe in the 1990s, and morphed into a craven acolyte of the aging dictator.”
Moyo was also sucked into a huge scandal involving the former Director General of the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC), Alum Mpofu. Moyo recruited Mpofu into the position but the ZBC boss left in a huff after it was alleged he was having an affair with Moyo.
The resignation, citing ‘personal reasons’, was submitted to stop an inquiry after Mpofu was caught in a homosexual act in a Harare night club owned by a Zanu PF MP. Moyo’s alleged affair with Mpofu is said to have started in 1999 when the propaganda chief was at the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa.
Several male journalists who worked for the state media during Moyo’s reign also alleged that they had to resist his sexual advances. Responding to the allegations of an affair with Mpofu, Moyo used his participation on the New Zimbabwe.com forums several years ago to give this reaction:
“As a probable pervert,” Moyo snapped back, “you wish I had a sexual relationship with him. No, I did not and could not because I am not a homosexual like he allegedly is, never have been, never will be….I have made it clear I don’t wish to be a bedroom policeman.”
Simon Khaya Moyo (Zanu PF national chairman)
Still sticking with the Moyo’s, former ambassador to South Africa and now Zanu PF chairman Simon Khaya Moyo filed for divorce from his wife of 30 years, Sibonokuhle Getrude Moyo (nee Ngwenya).
On the 23rd of August this year, Moyo filed divorce summons at the High Court claiming there was no ‘love and affection’ and the marriage had irretrievably broken down and there were “no conjugal rights enjoyed between the parties.”
It was left to the Daily News newspaper who managed to get hold of the affidavit to report that Moyo’s wife was bedding another man and the marriage is broken beyond repair because of this “infidelity” among other reasons.
“The defendant (Gertrude) has committed infidelity with another man,” Khaya Moyo reveals in the court papers. Although the other man in the love triangle is not mentioned, sources familiar with the case say he is a farmer known as Machemedze.
Khaya Moyo, married Getrude at independence in 1980 and they have two adult children, Khanyisa Khaya Mduduzi Moyo (born on 7 July1982) and Langa Mandlenkosi Khaya Moyo (born 4 April 1986). Khaya Moyo says he cannot pay maintenance to Getrude since their two sons are now adults.
Grace Mugabe and Gideon Gono
In October of 2010 the South African Sunday Times newspaper ran a story claiming Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe governor Gideon Gono was bedding Robert Mugabe’s wife, the First Lady Grace Mugabe over a 5 year period.
The two allegedly met as often as three times a month at Grace’s Gushungo Dairy Estate, at expensive hotels in South Africa and on foreign trips to Asia. It was claimed Sabina Mugabe, 75, warned her brother before she died that he was being betrayed by two important people in his personal and political life.
The story claimed Mugabe’s 36 year old bodyguard Cain Chademana was poisoned because he admitted to the Zanu PF leader upon questioning that he knew about the affair but had decided to keep quiet about it. The newspaper claims officials had hoped the secret affair would be buried with Chademana.
However Chademana’s death certificate, swiftly leaked to online media along with an accompanying letter from a hospital where he was treated , said he suffered cardiorespiratory arrest, disseminated tuberculosis, pneumonia and ‘retroviral infection’ — a medical euphemism for HIV.
Both Grace and Gono denied the affair and claimed they are partners in a number of business enterprises and this explained their close working relationship. The fact that Gono managed to retain his job as central bank chief suggests to many that Mugabe believed his side of the story.