Tarisai Machakaire 7 May 2017
HARARE – Activist cleric Patrick Phillip Mugadza has launched a fresh
assault on President Robert Mugabe and his Zanu PF government by
petitioning the United States President Donald Trump to force the
long-serving Zimbabwean leader to step down.
Mugadza, who is facing a slew of charges at the courts, among them his
controversial prophecy that Mugabe would die before end of this year, said
Trump had hinted he would do that during his presidential campaigns last
“I am basically saying Trump made a promise that he would deal with
dictators like Mugabe and (Ugandan President Yoweri) Museveni and now is
the time to fulfil it.
“Mugabe’s own ministers recently bought him a special massage chair which
is the clearest sign that he is now incapacitated,” Mugadza told the Daily
News on Sunday about his embargoed petition.
“And as for our own parliamentarians, they must make Mugabe realise that
he cannot handle being on that position anymore. They must communicate
that on the nation’s behalf.”
The Remnant Church leader has previously petitioned the Roman Catholic
Pope to excommunicate the nonagenarian arguing that his governance style
was not consistent with someone claiming to be a Christian.
Yesterday, Mugadza defended his activism despite some reservations among
his colleagues who accuse him of being political.
“I feel that my ministry goes hand-in-hand with activism although for so
long we (pastors) have lived under the misconception that it is a taboo
but it was just a trick by the regime to make sure that the most powerful
entity, the Church, remains quiet pinned to the pulpit,” said Mugadza.
The unorthodox pastor, recently caused controversy among the church
pastors, when he challenged the government to build special “conjugal
rights cottages” in jails to allow prisoners to enjoy intimacy with their
“I have seen condoms in prison and I have seen them with inmates. What
does that tell you? It means some gay activity is most likely going on in
there, although I am told that one can actually have intimacy with a woman
“I was told how this can be done and I asked whether my wife could also
visit me in prison and they said no.
“I then began to realise that there is a need for the government to
seriously think about this, as even…Mugabe says gays and lesbians are
worse than dogs, which is not a very good statement from a leader because
from my point of view as a clergyman, everybody was created in the image
of God irrespective of what they do.
“They could be doing a wrong thing but that does not make them dogs at any
“The best way is to speak to them so that they know what they are doing is
wrong. So, if the president is seriously against gay relationships, what
does he have to do?
“He has got to create a situation where he is going to be having what I
call `conjugal cottages’ in prison. This way, women can say visit their
husbands there,” ,” Mugadza said upon release from remand prison in March
where he had stayed for over six weeks following his arrest on the Mugabe
Mugadza is still facing a litany of criminal charges at the Harare
Magistrates’ Courts – including prophesying that Mugabe would die before
end of October this year.
Last month, he was cleared of one of the charges relating to him having
allegedly abused the national flag.
Mugadza first hit the headlines in December 2015 when he mounted a one-man
protest against Mugabe in Victoria Falls, during Zanu PF’s national
conference at the resort, where he held a placard that read: “Mr
President, the people are suffering. Proverbs 21:13“.
In April last year, he also chained himself to a pole while holding a
cross in one hand and a Bible in the other, in a daring protest action in
He is still on trial on this other matter and is also yet to defend
himself on his controversial “prophecy” in which he claimed Mugabe would
die on October 17, this year.
In the last case, the Remnant Church leader is being charged with
insulting both Christian and African traditional religions, with the State
claiming that predicting someone’s death is taboo.
His death prophecy has caused palpable anger within sections of Zanu PF –
which is riven with its seemingly unstoppable tribal, factional and