CLERIC Evan Mawarire’s anti-government social media campaign #ThisFlag launched in April this year is now targeting failed Cabinet ministers individually in a bid to force them to step down.
Source: #ThisFlag guns for failed ministers – NewsDay Zimbabwe June 13, 2016
In the latest campaign, Mawarire has invited disgruntled citizens to sign an online petition to force Energy and Power Development minister Samuel Undenge to quit over allegations of mishandling public funds through tender irregularities.
“Get a petition form and participate. Send a form a request email to email@example.com. Get it signed by citizens’ family and friends, scan and email it back. Let’s build Zimbabwe,” part of an advert calling for people to support the initiative read.
Undenge has, in the past few weeks, been hogging the limelight for the wrong reasons after he allegedly awarded multi-million energy tenders to convict Wicknell Chivayo’s Intratrek under unclear circumstances.
The minister is under pressure to explain an unsecured advance of $5 million by the Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC), the energy infrastructure subsidiary of power utility Zesa Holdings, to Intratrek, among other decisions.
Undenge also allegedly ordered Zesa to engage a private public relations firm, Fruitful Communications co-owned by Zanu PF legislator Psychology Maziwisa and State media journalist Oscar Pambuka, at a time the power utility has a fully-staffed public relations unit.
On his part, Undenge has claimed his hands were clean and accused political rivals within the faction-ridden Zanu PF party of tarnishing his “otherwise good image”.
Mawarire’s first video, about how the Zimbabwean flag’s colours have lost significance because of alleged political mismanagement, attracted over 120 000 views on the first day it was posted.
He has since posted several videos, and the campaign has taken on a life of its own, with other disgruntled citizens now posting videos of themselves wrapped in the flag and expressing their frustrations over government’s failures.
Opposition MDC-T MPs recently caused a scene when they entered Parliament with the national flag draped around their shoulders.
President Robert Mugabe’s supporters have countered Mawarire’s campaign with their own, #OurFlag to extoll government’s virtues and successes.