Former vice president Joice Mujuru
ZimPF splinter group which recently rebranded to National People’s Party (NPP) has come under fire from opposition parties, being accused of working in cahoots with the ruling party Zanu Pf and trying to derail the National Electoral Reform Agenda (NERA) efforts.
Following a statement released by NPP Harare Interim Chair Mr Munyaradzi Banda accusing a few individuals within NERA of using victims of demonstration violence to source funding, opposition parties have dismissed the utterances saying most of the NPP members are still having a Zanu PF hangover.
Speaking to this publication, NERA Secretary General Mr Joelson Mugari said having an opposition party grounded on fighting other opposition parties and ignoring the need for electoral reforms ahead of 2018 is quite unfortunate.
“We are facing a big challenge with the political party NPP in the sense that most of the members of NPP are still having Zanu Pf DNA in them, so they are failing to actually admit working with others.
“So as much as you are in opposition and trying to fight another opposition then automatically we regard such elements as Zanu Pf, those are infiltrators,” he said.
Mugari said Banda was one of the first people that he communicated with and called him to a meeting at Harvest House ahead of yesterday’s demo but he vowed he can never set foot at Harvest House because he believes Tsvangirai is sponsored by Whites.
Banda, in a statement said NPP is distancing itself from yesterday’s NERA demonstrations as their party members benefit nothing accept for being used to gain donor funds which only benefit a few, yet they incur medical, legal and financial costs.
He also called NERA an ‘illusory’ agenda with the MDC-T gaining mileage with sponsored youths calling for the removal of NPP from the reforms movement,
He accused NERA of receiving and hiding huge sums of money from donors for the demonstration.
“NERA, it’s all about money. You will march, you might even get hurt but only a few will get the money,” Banda said.
A member of Transform Zimbabwe who is part of individuals, who have been contributing to NERA financially, dismissed Banda’s allegations saying member parties make contributions and Dr Mujuru is just but trying to divide the opposition.
“I am very much aware of what happens in NERA, I know for sure that they have never received any big amount. Most of the people who help NERA are encouraged to pay for stuff directly like posters and fliers.
“NERA officials handle very little cash and on this particular demo, money received was less than $1 500,” he said.
“Mai Mujuru is lying and trying to divide the opposition which is not right. How does she expect to win elections if she is not fighting for reforms?
“They should actually produce evidence and this is not the first time these allegations have been labelled against NERA. These are very serious allegations that are meant to tarnish the image of NERA and its officials,” he added.
Mugari concurred with the Transform Zimbabwe member saying “It was a few political parties that happened to fund the program (demonstration).”
On past demonstrations Mugari said Zim Pf has never contributed anything but Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights, Transform Zimbabwe and the MDC-T.
This is not the first time the Mujuru led party has accused people of usurping funds as earlier this year accused Zim Pf founders Rugare Gumbo and Didymus Mutasa of pocketing British funds meant for her party, which the two said were unfounded allegations.
NPP, then still a united Zim PF under Mujuru, was towards end of last year also involved in harsh exchange of words with Zimbabwe Women in Politics Alliance (Zwipa) leader Linda Masarira over the distribution of more than US$100 000 that was said to have come from donors for the anti-bond demonstration.