Zimbabwe Ministers in War of Words

Harare- Fresh fights have emerged within President Emmerson Mnangagwa administration after deputy Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Energy Mutodi accused Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Sibusiso Busi Moyo of behaving like a Prime Minister, hours after Moyo publicly censured him for comments critical of Tanzania’s coronavirus response.

A leaked letter which Mutodi wrote to Moyo shows Mutodi blasting the former army securocrat. This was after Moyo in a statement released to State media on Monday said Mutodi’s comments made on Twitter “do not reflect the government’s position nor policy.”

“With due respect to your highly regarded office, I wish to remind you that our two ministries operate on a divergent yet complimentary role, with your foreign affairs ministry outward looking while my information ministry is inward,” Mutodi wrote to Moyo in a May 12 letter.

Mutodi said his tweet which praised President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak, while appearing to mock Tanzania’s, was designed for the Zimbabwean voter.

“While my ministry is worried about the public perception on the national leadership, its image, electability and the public approval ratings of the president, your ministry focuses on foreign cooperation and diplomatic engagement, otherwise our two ministries should have been merged if they served the same purpose,” he wrote.

The foreign minister told Mutsvangwa and Mangwana that he was forced into issuing the statement after the Tanzanian embassy in Harare raised objections to Mutodi’s May 4 tweet, which he had not deleted by Wednesday.

Mutodi had tweeted: “His Excellency John Pombe Magafuli’s Tanzania now has 630 Covid-19 cases with prayers but without a lockdown, while His Excellency President E.D. Mnangagwa’s Zimbabwe only got 31 cases with a lockdown and masks. An insight into how managers can be game changers.”

Moyo publicly reprimanded Mutodi prompting the former musician to write a letter advising the former that he was not Prime Minister.

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