Makone whose side are you on?

theresa_makone2Just a week after being sworn in as co-Home Affairs Minister in the MDC-T cabinet reshuffle, (Pictured: Theresa Makone last week spent energies trying to release a son of a Zanu (PF) minister while Diamond researcher Farai Maguwu languishes in prison on cooked up charges)

Theresa Makone has got herself into a compromising situation by trying to assist another minister get his son released from police cells. It is alleged that Makone and Presidential Affairs Minister Didymus Mutasa went to Mbare, Matapi and Stodart police stations in Harare to demand the release of Mutasas son Martin.

Forty-seven year old Martin Mutasa, a notorious Zanu (PF) activist Themba Mliswa and George Marere were all arrested last Monday after trying to seize shareholding worth US$1 million from a company owned by white businessman Paul Westwood. The trio threatened Westwood to cooperate, claiming they had authority from Mugabe and Indigenisation Minister Saviour Kasukuwere to take over 50 percent of his Noshio Investments Limited.

While human rights activist Farai Maguwu is fast approaching four weeks in remand prison over cooked up charges, Makone appeared to prefer spending her energy trying to help secure the release of the son of a Zanu (PF) Minister. Police officers complained that both ministers had tried to intimidate them into releasing Martin. Although Martin and his colleagues were granted US$400 bail each, the state invoked the notorious Section 121 of the Criminal Procedure and Evidence Act to keep them locked up for another 7 days.

The embarrassing incident will do little to assure people who expressed misgivings about Makone landing the job as co-Home Affairs Minister. Much has been made of her close friendship to Jocelyn Chiwenga, the wife of army general Constantine Chiwenga. In 2007 Makone told the Zimbabwe Independent newspaper that Jocelyn was her long-standing friend. Many will remember that Chiwengas husband, apart from being a member of the murderous Joint Operations Command, vowed never to salute Morgan Tsvangirai if he ever won presidential elections.

Meanwhile political commentators have said the incident involving Minister Mutasas son points to heavy factional fighting within ZANU PFs. Themba Mliswa, one of those arrested with Martin this week, has accused police commissioner Augustine Chihuri of being the most corrupt person in the country. Mliswa is a nephew to Mutasa and the fissure lines are there for all to see. Its believed different factions control different arms of state security like the CIO, police, army and prisons. Theresa Makone involving herself in these factional fights does not send a good message on behalf of the MDC-T. Efforts to get comment from Makone were in vain as Newsreel was told cabinet ministers from the MDC-T were in South Africa, for a workshop.

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