BY SHARON BUWERIMWE
GUTU West MP John Paradza (Zanu PF) has been accused of unleashing State security agents on a local teacher to force him to leave the area for being “a security threat” .
The teacher, Batsiranayi Ngugama, yesterday told NewsDay that Paradza accused him of “poisoning” people in his constituency by publishing “anti-government articles” in various publications.
“I wrote stories about inputs that were stolen by Zanu PF and another story of a cop who assaulted one of our teachers. Now Paradza is saying I’m a security threat, adding that if I don’t move out of his constituency, it would hinder him from winning elections. He said I should move out with my family,” Ngugama said.
“He has been threatening me verbally for a very long time. On December 30, he sent State agents at my place at night who ordered me to move out.”
Paradza yesterday denied the allegations, saying as an MP, he worked well with all teachers in his constituency.
“That is not true, I’m actually his leader and I have never had any issues with him. I work very well with civil servants. I never sent any State agents to him. I’m just an MP,” the legislator said.
Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe president Obert Masaraure said the continued persecution of teachers by politicians was threatening the education sector, adding that they needed protection as the country heads for the 2023 elections.
“Teachers are already incapacitated. We don’t want Zanu PF to further suffocate our platform. Political parties are not allowed to be affecting our schools for any reason,” he said.
“We are calling for the protection of our schools and the responsible ministers of education to raise this issue in Cabinet. Teachers lost limbs in previous elections and we don’t want that to repeat.”
Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe president Takavafira Zhou said: “Teachers provide light to communities and communities must thank teachers for teaching their own children. It is also very unfortunate for an MP to harass teachers.”