Zanu PF political commissar and deputy defence minister Victor Matemadanda has claimed that some ruling party officials wanted him to die a few days ago when he fell sick with a mysterious disease.
Zanu PF acting spokesman Patrick Chinamasa said Matemadanda fell ill on November 14 displaying symptoms of “itchiness of eyes, sweating profusely, swelling of the body and vomiting badly.”
A picture circulated online showed Matemadanda with swollen eyes and many have been made to believe it was a mysterious disease allegedly a symptom of poison.
In an interview with NewsDay on Monday, the war veterans leader said some Zanu PF officials wanted him dead. But he said he would not be deterred from doing the assignments he was tasked with by the ruling party.
“Don’t expect people to love you.
“Whatever happened will not deter me from my assignment. Even if I were to die, many precious lives have been lost for this country and I am not special, for as long as I am serving as per my appointment and I am doing something right in the party,” Matemadanda said.
He added; “even if it is my assignment that people would hate me for, I will do what I was assigned to do. No one kicks a dead dog, and if you then see people taking up stones when they approach your home, it means there is a vicious dog, and so it means I am biting them.”
He directed questions on whether he was poisoned or not to acting Zanu PF spokesperson Patrick Chinamasa.
“That is for comrade Chinamasa to say. He is the person qualified to speak for the party, I am not the party. I am just a drop (of water) in the party, but what I can say is that I am at work, I have my energy and I am raring to go.
“It doesn’t matter where I fell sick. There are mortuaries in those hospitals and it doesn’t matter where I fell sick and how. What is important is that I am fine and I am back.
“I now know people’s perceptions about me. Some were posting saying ‘you should have died’. I wish them well because they have exposed themselves.
“I had my obituaries and messages before I died, so it gave me a picture of what people would say if I were to die. What makes me happy is that the number of those who were sympathising (with me) is more than those who wished me dead.”
He added: “My mother would hide sugar from us as I was good at stealing, and so when I grew up, I was diagnosed with diabetes and the doctor said I should not take sugar as it was dangerous for my health. I said to myself, if sweet things like sugar can kill, who am I to be liked by everybody when sweet things can also kill.
“Some people should be free to hate me and others should love and like me, but you would want to understand why would people hate you that much?” he added.
Yesterday Matemadanda walked strong in the streets of Harare showing people that he had recovered from the mystery disease. The war veterans leader said he wanted to listen to the concerns of the people.
“I walked around Harare to listen to people’s concerns and to help my party and my President (Emmerson Mnangagwa) to solve the problems in the country.
“Zanu PF has a manifesto that is people-centred and I am at the centre of that as the national commissar, and so I went and spoke to the people about their needs,” he said.
The ruling party has a history of using poison to fight rivalries both internally and externally.
At the peak of factionalism in Zimbabwe during the leadership of the late former president Robert Mugabe, the then vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa (now President) was allegedly poisoned at White City Stadium in Bulawayo by Grace Mugabe’s loyalists, the Generation 40 (G-40) faction.
The other faction was led by Mnangagwa and his supporters, who include many government ministers and army generals. They were known as Lacoste, from his nickname ngwena, or crocodile.