via After rice, Grace offers journalists farms – NewZimbabwe 06/12/2015
FIRST LADY Grace Mugabe says local journalists should be given farms regardless of the media organisations they work for.
The land offer comes a week after she gave journalists from different media houses some food hand-outs because they were ‘hungry’.
Grace seems to now have a soft spot for private media journalists whom she has previously called foolish and uneducated, needing mental examination.
Last year, at Rudhaka Stadium in Marondera, she unleashed a vitriolic attack on the private media, accusing them of fabricating stories to tarnish her image.
But she has since changed her heart, saying the blame should not be on journalists as they are fed with wrong information by senior Zanu PF members.
She said this Friday to Zanu PF supporters at Mushayavanhu School in Masvingo during her meet the people rally.
Speaking in vernacular, Grace’s message was met with roars of laughter.
“Imi ma journalist nyangwe dai uchishanda ku NewsDay kana ku Daily News kana kuti chii, endai munotsvaga munda (you journalists, it doesn’t matter whether you work for Newsday, Daily News or whatever, go and ask for land to farm).
“Mwanangu teerera zviri kutaurwa naAmai, vako enda unotsvaga munda, (take this advice from me as your mother; seriously go and ask for the land).
“Nokuti ndiri kukutaurira, nokuti zvinoitika mangwana hauzive (you never know what will happen to you tomorrow.)
“Mangwana dzimwe nguva basa rako richapera (tomorrow you may lose your job, but you will have a fall-back position).
“Nyora zvako ibasa yes, unoda uwane zvekudya asi enda unotsvaga munda (do your job for now so that you get paid and survive but please go and ask for a farm).
“Uwane pekuti kana mangwanawo wava nevazukuru oti penyu pandichakusirirayi ndeapa (that farm will also be inherited by your grandchildren).”
In 2000, President Mugabe embarked on a country-wide land grab programme which government claimed was meant to redress colonial past imbalances.
The chaotic programme saw the redistribution of white owned farms to blacks along patronage lines.
During the Masvingo rally President Mugabe’s wife also accused Zanu PF Central Committee and Politburo members of double standards saying they were bribing journalists to write about the goings on in the ruling party.
“Dzimwe nguva tinoshora vana ava (sometimes we rush to judge these journalists and yet it will be you (central and politburo members) who would have told them what to write.)
“Mune chipo chekurota here imi (do you journalists dream about these things?).
“…journalists are told what to write by people we spend time with in the Politburo and Central committee.
“I know all about it, there is someone among us, behind our backs, who goes and corrupts journalists.
“Pasi naye, (down with that person); you stop it.”
She added that journalists spend time within the said politicians’ offices being fed with negative information about fellow ruling party members. She said just because journalists need to put food on their table and fear the politburo members they end up writing what they are told.
Observers say Grace Mugabe may have been responding to a story published by a local weekly which said she and former Zanu PF Women’s League boss Oppah Muchinguri had exchanged harsh words in the politburo that left Grace close to tears.
The paper quoted unnamed politburo members.