Heads roll at Herald

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe yesterday lashed out at State media, singling out The Herald newspaper, for running disparaging and destructive stories about deadly factionalism within his embattled Zanu PF party.

And just as Mugabe was rubbishing the State media at a Zanu PF politburo meeting in the capital, it emerged that heads were already rolling at Zimpapers, the publisher of The Herald.

Information filtered out late last night that the company’s group chief executive officer, Justin Mutasa, and finance director, Adolf Majome, had been sent packing unceremoniously amid a cocktail of negative factors bedevilling the media house.

Sources told the Daily News that the departure of Mutasa and Majome was linked to the anger of senior Zanu PF bigwigs against Zimpapers “for being sucked in factionalism”. The two men’s fate had apparently also been sealed once the company came out publicly this week to say it had recorded massive losses in its interim results.

The Daily News had not seen the official statement on this that was due to be released yesterday evening at the time of going to Press.

But it is understood that the statement was to contain a well-managed public relations piece explaining that Mutasa had requested to retire while Majome’s contract had allegedly expired.

The Daily News was reliably informed last night that following Mugabe’s statement, more big names were to fall at Zimpapers.

Rugare Gumbo, Zanu PF’s spokesperson, earlier on told journalists soon after the politburo meeting yesterday that Mugabe had registered serious umbrage over The Herald’s coverage of events within Zanu PF, which was exposing his party to unwarranted criticism.

“The president also went further to denounce factionalism in the party. He was very critical of the media,” Gumbo said.

“He felt that the coverage in the media particularly The Herald, where the headline all the time is destructive statements about the party, disparaging the party, exposing the party to unnecessary criticism,” Gumbo added.

The Zanu PF spokesperson said the president urged the media, together with party leaders, to concentrate on development issues rather than abuse power.

“He felt that the media and also the leaders must focus on issues and not on personalities and abuse of power,” Gumbo said.

Some Zanu PF leaders’ in the past have raised their reservations on how the State media is covering developments within the party.

Just on Monday, Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial chair Temba Mliswa accused Information minister Jonathan Moyo of allegedly being a “gay gangster” who is manipulating the State media to attack his political opponents.

“The gay gangsters are controlling the State media. Some of you won’t write what I’m saying here to appease Prof Moyo,” Mliswa said.

Mliswa’s outburst was precipitated by a series of stories carried out by the State media alleging that he and 11 other Zanu PF legislators (the so-called Dirty Dozen) were working with American intelligence operatives.

Mugabe, during the burial of the national hero Nathan Shamuyarira, openly tore into Moyo branding him a ‘devil incarnate’, while accusing him of appointing editors of State-owned newspapers who were sympathetic to the opposition.

Mugabe also accused Moyo of using the government-controlled newspapers to sow divisions with Zanu PF.

The president further complained that his Zanu PF had been infiltrated by “weevils” (a crop pest) bent on destroying the party from within.

Didymus Mutasa, the minister of State for Presidential Affairs, also lashed out against State media in November last year for taking sides in the Zanu PF succession drama.

Mutasa, who is also Zanu PF secretary for administration, said he was particularly not happy with being portrayed in the State media as a “dwarf in huge robes.”

“Please stop it, leave us alone, please regard us as your leaders, we come from the people who voted for us, and the president. We want to work in harmony,” Mutasa said.

Comments (18)

Yes indeed Disaster, yes indeed. He likes to give it but can't take it.

mukwerekwere - 2 October 2014

Daily News you are very behind on the news...Herald has already disputed the Rugare Gumbo statement...seems like Daily News is trailing Herald on Zanu pf issues ...whilst you were publishing this story Moyo had already responded to Gumbo's comments.I dont think Moyo slept because all 3 headlines in Herald about Gono and Gumbo being offside and Mugabe attacking indiscipline were all made my Moyo.

josh - 2 October 2014

Why do we get updates of your online news only after midday

Degree - 2 October 2014

That the Herald has disputed the statement by Gumbo doesnt meant Daily news is behind. Its still the news, and that thehearld refuted it doesnt mean they are being truthful. Lets see if these guys wont go home, and lets see if more will follow suite. Thats the material part of the news not refutes by herald.

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FIVE STAR - 2 October 2014

It comes as no surprise at all that with all that sowing of divisions within his ZANU PF party and even extending to MDC-T, Mugabe had his hands full and all his efforts would come back and bite him one day. All along he has been enjoying sitting on the ground in the middle which has now become shaky. When he called Tsvangirai who he shared power with an ugly bed hopper he didn't see anything wrong with that, when he called his own appointee and Spin doctor 'the devil incarnate and a weevil', he was enjoying himself. Your people Mr President are only taking after you when they attack each other for belonging to different groups of thought, why should it bother you now when you have paved the way for them and shown them how it's done? You can't always have the cake and eat it too.

Dr Know - 2 October 2014

Bullys are cowards, the moment they get a taste of their medicine they cry foul. Herald itai basa sebasa. besides the taxpayer needs non partisan reporting, no matter who is involved.

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Imi Daily news muri kumashure zve sua paonline updates,tozoverenga news kuma 1pm here.Pliz be serious

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GALLERYCARTRIDGES - 2 October 2014

why not just close this paper its causing a lot of confusion in the party

wakaah - 2 October 2014

I don't see anything wrong with plotting against a washed-up person like Mugabe. They are fighting each other for the Presidency.

Musona - 2 October 2014

I knew these herald guys were working against ZPF and supporting MDC kabisira. Pretended to demonise Tsvangirai ivo vachimusapota. There is not a day that passes without the paper publishing mastories aTSV.

the patriot - 3 October 2014

I feell journalism (or is it editorials) need a revamp, right across the borad.The media houses are still mirred in yesteryear polarisation and we the readers have to sift through their ineptitude for news. Vose ngavambogariswa pasi, answer qstn what does the reader want, what levels of competence and not TSvangirai this, Biti that, Mugabe that......hazvichatinakidzi.

Don Wezhira - 3 October 2014

As readers we appeal to our Media in Zimbabwe to write stories as they are and contribute towards the development of our country.stop writing political and ficticious stories for church leaders everyday.

sisonke - 8 October 2014

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