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Zanu-PF's Mugwadi, Sophie Mokoena in catfight over 'fake news'

by Staff reporter
10 Jan 2021 at 16:57hrs | Views
Zanu-PF's director of information Tafadzwa Mugwadi has been embroiled in a prolonged war of words with SABC foreign editor Sophie Mokoena over what he claims to be biased reporting by South Africa's public broadcaster.

Mugwadi recently wrote on Twitter: "If the ANC and SABC News do not restrain and reign [rein in] Sophie Mokoena whose fake news reporting and tweeting is directed at undermining a neighbouring country and President E.D Mnangagwa for no apparent reason, I will seek permission to leak a bombshell on why the ANC delegation came."

Mugwadi made the threat in reaction to what he has called "hostile reportage" against Zimbabwe and Zanu-PF by the SABC, and allegedly spearheaded by Mokoena, who often tags Mnangagwa in her Twitter posts.

Some of her tweets have, however, been flagged as "fake news", particularly by Zanu-PF, as the pictures "depict incidents that did not happen in Zimbabwe."

Recently, Mokoena asked Mnangagwa to explain the situation at the Beitbridge border post as thousands of Zimbabweans queued to enter South Africa.

On Sunday, Mokoena tackled Mugwadi, accusing him of floor-crossing and singing for his supper, joining Zanu-PF after he was previously an active member of the opposition-aligned Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU).

Mokoena shared a picture to her legion of followers, allegedly depicting Mugwadi attending an event of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change.

In some of his tweets, Mugwadi has called Mokoena "an embattled marriage wrecker in newsrooms", an "urchin", a "little girl" and in another tweet Mugwadi said Mokoena was "a concubine" of a senior ANC leader. He also accused Mokoena of dating one of Zimbabwe's former cabinet ministers who had fled to South Africa.

The South African National Editors Forum (Sanef) has also called on the Zanu-PF leadership to step in and discipline Mugwadi. On Saturday, Sanef said Mugwadi's remarks against Mokoena were a bid to "intimidate, harass, and stop her from doing her job."

Source - African News Agency (ANA)