By Mugove Tafirenyika
Expelled Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) elders — Rugare Gumbo and Didymus Mutasa — have threatened to sue the party’s interim leader Joice Mujuru (pictured) for allegedly making “defamatory” sexual remarks against them, unless she publicly apologises.
A fortnight ago, Mujuru accused the pair of seeking to turn her into a sex slave, after proposing that she be the opposition party’s “queen bee” — a claim First Lady Grace Mugabe went to town about at her recent rally in Buhera.
In an audio recording of her addressing provincial structures in Masvingo, which has since been posted on Facebook, she accused the once close allies of asking her to sleep with male colleagues in the party, taking advantage that she is a widow.
“I was supposed to mate with all the men in the party. I was supposed to be their wife. I was supposed to work for them because they had seen that while I was still in Egypt (Zanu PF) I used to work hard. So they wanted to borrow that hard-working spirit to work for them and I told them that I can’t be your queen bee.
“I am a woman of substance even though I am a widow, I have an image to protect and since the death of my husband (Solomon Mujuru), I have no appetite for men. I told them that I am here to work for Zimbabwe and this did not make them happy,” she said.
But Gumbo and Mutasa came out guns blazing yesterday, demanding Mujuru retracts her statement and apologise publicly.
They threatened litigation, if she does not.
In a February 20 letter through their attorney Gerald Mlotshwa of Titan Law, the duo took exception to Mujuru’s allegations.
“Your words were malicious and deliberately intended to tarnish our clients’ respective reputation and standing,” Mlotshwa wrote.
“We have instructions to demand from you, on behalf of our clients, as we hereby do, a full retraction of your allegations along with a public apology in respect of the unfounded statement made denigrating our clients,” he said.
“Should we not have received any such retraction and public apology by close of business this Friday, February 24, 2017, we will have no option but to proceed with our clients’ further instructions to sue you in the High Court for combined amount of $5 million,” Mlotshwa threatened.
Responding to the demands, Mujuru — through her spokesperson Gift Nyandoro, who is also her lawyer — said she was ready to stand trial and described Gumbo and Mutasa as State agents desperate to destroy her political career.
“We are seized with the letter from the two and notwithstanding that, we are in the process of taking instructions from our client. We must hasten to say the claim is ill-advised and misplaced to say the least,” Nyandoro told the Daily News yesterday.
“It is a desperate attempt by the two to decimate Mujuru at all costs and to the full aspiration of the regime being Mugabe and Zanu PF,” he said, adding that “but the battle lines have been drawn because we are ready to expose the two for who they really are and we are ready to face (President Robert) Mugabe’s puppies.”
Mujuru has claimed that the party had been heavily infiltrated. Daily News