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    Saturday, 17 September 2016

    Shocking: Chiefs from Masvingo Rural demand inclusion on food aid



    Demand 50kg grain every month


    NKULUMANI MLAMBO

    MASVINGO
    – The Provincial Social Services Officer in Masvingo has rejected a request to allocate 50kg monthly maize food aid to nine chiefs from Masvingo Rural District on the grounds that the relief food was for vulnerable  groups and not people with sources of income.
     According to documents in the hands of The Mirror, the chiefs or their representatives met at Masvingo District Administrator's office and resolved that they be allocated food aid for their households.
    The nine chiefs are the president of the Chiefs Council, Fortune Charumbira, Chief Boniface Musara, Chief Shumba, Chief Mapanzure, Chief Murinye, Chief Mugabe, Chief Chikwanda, Chief Nyajena and Chief Zimuto.
    The Mirror understands that in addition to the chiefs, all the headmen in the district were also supposed to get allocations.
    All chiefs enjoy Government allowances, some of them are gainfully employed as teachers while others are in the Senate where they are pampered with luxuries including state of the art vehicles.
    The move came at a time when the Zimbabwe Human Rights Commission has produced a damning report on the politicisation and abuse of food aid in many districts throughout the country.
    The request for the aid was shot down by the Provincial Services Officer, Ngonidzashe Jakaza who wrote back to the district officer and told him that chiefs did not qualify for relief food under programmes for vulnerable people.
    In the terse letter dated August 31, 2016, Jakaza said the chiefs are free to apply for food aid from other facilties.
    "The PDRC on 02/08/2016 could not conquer with your request to allocate traditional leaders grain under the current drought relief programme for vulnerable households," read the letter to Masvingo District Services officer, Innocent Chapungu.
    Masvingo Rural District Acting DA Makepeace Muzenda however denied that there was ever such a request adding that such an appeal would be ridiculous. She said she was not aware of it.
    However, The Mirror has letters of correspondences where the request was rejected.
    The request by the chiefs is said to have shocked civil servants who attended the meeting because all the chiefs are well-up and the request defied the criteria.
    "Chief Musara is a land developer, Chief Mugabe works for the ministry of Primary and Secondary Education as a teacher, Chief Murinye runs a farm in Norton in Mashonaland West province while Chief Charumbira is a lawyer by profession but they want to benefit from food meant for the vulnerable," said an employee at the DA's offices who declimed to be identified.
    Most of the chiefs are beneficiaries of the land reform programme where they got large farms including sugarcane plots in Chiredzi.
    The food that the chiefs were supposed to get was to be withdrawn from Renco Mine residents (Ward 35) for reallocation to them (chiefs). Renco is predominantly urban and pro-opposition.
    The most vocal chief in the demand for the food aid was Headman Mukamwi who argued that as chiefs they had plenty of visitors to their homes and they needed Government support to feed them.top story news
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