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Gandawa admits taking part in Zanu-PF's rights violations

by Staff reporter
05 Jun 2020 at 08:21hrs | Views
SELF-EXILED former Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Godfrey Gandawa has sensationally admitted he took part in atrocities on behalf of Zanu-PF although he now lived to regret his dark past.

In a statement released this week, the former top government official said his previous association with the ruling party was an error of good judgment.

Now exiled in neighbouring South Africa, Gandawa was part of the Zanu-PF G40 faction that was unceremoniously removed from office soon after the fall of the now late President Robert Mugabe from office in a military backed coup in November 2017.

The former MP for Magunje immediately fled to South Africa.

In his statement, Gandawa admitted he was "part of the central cog in Zanu-PF and took part in violating human rights."

"I deeply regret having worked with Zanu-PF. It was a significant error of judgment to have ignored the party's past violations in the interest of political expediency," he said.

"I accept that I must bear the distrust and suspicion that accompanies all those who have dined with the devil, and work to restore the reputation I built before entering government.

"I joined active politics in 2013 after a career spanning 15 years in development work and academia. It was this development work which includes the setting up of 12 new secondary schools, construction of seven weir dams, a hospital, nine dip tanks, 79 classroom blocks, and other such initiatives, that spurred my community to encourage me to represent them as their Member of Parliament," he said.

Gandawa said despite some challenges, there was hope in Zimbabwe then following the adoption of a new Constitution.

"My decision to run on a Zanu-PF ticket was merely the path of least resistance given that my community, Magunje, was a Zanu-PF stronghold. While I was aware of Zanu-PF's many failings, the objective was not to challenge the political order but to better serve the community through effective representation in Parliament," he added.

Gandawa said he started disliking the ruling party when he heard of its intention to topple Mugabe and replacing him with Emmerson Mnangagwa.

"My great undoing came about after a State (media) journalist attempted to recruit me in a plot to overthrow President Mugabe, claiming he had been sent by then Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

"I was compelled by the oath of office to report the incident and recorded a second episode with the same journalist. That audio recording is now in the public domain through no actions of my own.

"Contrary to claims, I was not expelled from Zanu-PF but expelled myself by standing as an independent at the 2018 election where I ran a vigorous anti-Mnangagwa campaign.

"Indeed, Zanu-PF lost the popular vote in both the Presidential and Parliamentary elections in Magunje. This information is in the public domain," he said.

Gandawa said after contesting and winning the Magunje seat during Mugabe's era, he was thrilled when the now late strongman appointed him as Higher Education Deputy Minister.

"I believe I served with distinction. In the four years, I was in government, I played a central role in the formulation of the STEM initiative that saw a 140% increase in students taking up sciences at A-Level."

Source - newzimbabwe