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Former Masvingo Provincial Affairs Minister Kudakwashe Bhasikiti’s double standards were yesterday exposed in the National Assembly when he pushed a motion condemning Government for allegedly failing to compensate Tokwe-Mukosi villagers affected by floods.

He gave notice last week to move a motion in which he denounced Government for failing to adequately help villagers resettled at Chingwizi, despite the fact that he was the one who spearheaded their relocation while he was still the provincial minister.

Masvingo Urban legislator Cde Daniel Shumba rose on a point of order, saying the motion which Cde Bhasikiti sought to debate should be withdrawn because he wanted to use privileged information he got while performing official duties. Cde Shumba cited double standards on the part of Cde Bhasikiti for seeking to condemn Government when he was the face of the State during the relocation of the villagers.

“The motion is irregularly before this House. The Honourable Member is a former Minister of Government and was privileged to have worked with the Government. Let’s observe the doctrine of separation of powers.”

Cde Shumba said what Cde Bhasikiti sought to do was in breach of the Constitution which states that one could not use information obtained in their official capacity in the manner he wanted to do.

He said the relevant portfolio committee was already seized with some of the issues Cde Bhasikiti wanted to raise in his motion. In his notice, Cde Bhasikiti said he was concerned with the continued suffering of the people relocated from the area surrounding Tokwe-Mukosi Dam to Chingwizi. “Further noting that Government has not fully implemented its plan to provide piped water and other social amenities in the area,” he said.

“Now, therefore, this House calls upon Government to urgently put in place irrigation infrastructure to support agricultural activities in the Chingwizi area, pay full compensation to all the families that had not yet been compensated and stop any further displacement of people from Chingwizi community.” The motion by Cde Bhasikiti surprised many legislators considering that during his days as provincial minister he was the one pushing hard for the relocation of the villagers to Chingwizi.

At one stage during his tenure, Cde Bhasikiti barred journalists from entering Chingwizi, arguing that the media was exaggerating challenges faced by the villagers. Government has since relocated the 2 700 families from Chingwizi holding camp to permanent plots pegged at Nuanetsi Ranch. There are plans to further move the villagers from the Naunetsi Ranch in Mwenezi to Chiumburu Farm in Chiredzi where conditions are far better.

Cde Bhasikiti was stripped of his duties as Provincial Affairs Minister after he was implicated together with former Vice President Mujuru in a plot to assassinate President Mugabe.

Source : The Herald