via Khaya-Moyo scared to speak on Kalanga jibe – New Zimbabwe 01/05/2015
ZANU PF spokesperson Simon Khaya-Moyo has hinted he may be too scared to respond to President Robert Mugabe’s attacks on his (Khaya) Kalanga tribe, saying it was unfair to expect him to respond to his boss.
This is despite the fact that many prominent Kalanga people, including national political parties, have publicly and loudly condemned Mugabe for saying Kalangas were “uneducated criminals”.
After Mugabe made his comments many people expected Khaya-Moyo to lead the moral outrage at the nonagenarian’s diatribe.
Veteran journalist Njabulo Ncube wrote on Facebook: “I wonder how SK, a big Kalanga, feels after the boss said Kalangas are uneducated tsotsis”.
Khaya-Moyo, who is senator for Bulilima-Mangwe, is proudly Kalanga as he fronts many developmental projects from his area during whose meetings they speak their language.
But in an interview with NewZimbabwe.com Friday, Khaya-Moyo said he could not respond to Mugabe who, on Wednesday, told a press conference in Harare that the Kalanga people were “uneducated” and were responsible for “petty crime” in South Africa.
“Honestly, do you expect me to respond to that? You are not serious my brother. I will not even attempt to talk about that. He is the president of my party and I can’t respond to his statement,” said Khaya-Moyo.
Mugabe’s comments provoked furry with opposition parties and activists lining up to condemn the 91-year old leader whom they accused of bigotry.
But Khaya-Moyo buried his head in the sand, implying he was too scared to respond to Mugabe’s jibe.
“I have no word to respond. Please don’t try to push me to respond to that I will not. He is my boss and I will not question why he said so or whether he meant it or not,” he said before hanging his phone.
Khaya-Moyo’s stance is typical as the state media also omitted Mugabe’s comments on the Kalanga, a development which many saw as a testament to widespread terror.
Khaya-Moyo was recently demoted from the position of Zanu PF national chairman. The former ambassador to South Africa who was also the late VP Joshua Nkomo’s secretary during the war, surprisingly remained in Zanu PF when his compatriots pulled out to resuscitate Zapu in 2008, an act many said spoke to his fear for the vindictive Mugabe.
But many prominent Kalanga people refused to keep quiet, taking to social media to express their anger at Mugabe’s gaffe.
Writer Masola waDabudabu said Mugabe’s comments were unacceptable.
“I am Kalanga and proudly so. Mugabe and all his educational degrees in violence can go hang in hell,” he wrote on Facebook.
“Kalanga people, let us stand up and defend our honour. There is an estimated three million Zimbabweans in South Africa.
“If all those people are mainly Kalangas, then we as Kalangas should be demanding more from the Zimbabwean government.”
The usually reserved Phathisani Moyo, former Sunday News Sports Editor, was also miffed.
He said: “Like my father, I am a proud Kalanga man, legally in South Africa and there are plenty more,” he said.
“For Mugabe to single out my tribe as uneducated and petty thieves fuelling xenophobia attacks in SA goes beyond ignorance. It is tribalistic and downright ignorant.”
Phathisani’s father, the late Smile Madubeko Moyo, was a prominent war veteran and friend of Khaya-Moyo and the late George Silundika another respected nationalist of Kalanga origin.
Nkululeko Dube of Iyasa theater group also expressed his disgust.
Among prominent Kalanga people are the late musicians Ndux Malax and Solomon Skuza, himself a war veteran.
Malax did the popular song called “Unity is Number One” which praises Mugabe and the late Joshua Nkomo for signing the 1987 Unity Accord which ended the Gukurahundi Genocide, Mugabe’s terror project against the people of Matebeleland.
Kalanga people are spread across the Matebeleland regions but most of them are found in Kezi, Plumtree, Maphisa, Ratanyana, Sun Yat Sen, Brunapeg, Zamanyoni, Phelandaba, Tshelanyemba, Mpindo and Tsholotsho.
All these areas were invaded by the Fifth Brigade during the Gukurahundi genocide, forcing many young people to abandon school and flee into Botswana and South Africa.
Mugabe is known to resent criticism and to the extent that the state media has never criticized him not even once for the past three decades he has been in power.