Tuesday 2 February 2021


 ZANU PF legislators yesterday spent the day fasting, and praying for mercy and healing as COVID-19 continues to ravage the party, as well as hundreds of ordinary Zimbabweans on a daily basis.

This was revealed by the party’s chief whip in the National Assembly, Pupurai Togarepi, who told NewsDay that it was heart-breaking that coronavirus was ravaging the nation, and taking away close colleagues, hence the need for the ruling party MPs to pray for “wisdom and solutions”.

“How can we be happy when we are losing comrades like this? It is difficult to see friends and colleagues passing on everyday like this,” he said.

As of yesterday morning, Health and Child Care ministry statistics showed that 1 217 people had died of COVID-19, while 33 388 cumulative cases had been recorded.

Some of the people that succumbed to the respiratory virus were top government officials that included ministers Sibusiso Moyo (Foreign Affairs and International Trade), Joel Biggie Matiza (Transport and Infrastructural Development) and former Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services boss, Commissioner-General Paradzai Zimondi, who were all buried on the same day last week at the National Heroes Acre.

Agriculture minister Perrance Shiri and Manicaland Provincial Affairs minister Ellen Gwaradzimba are some of the high-profile politicians that have succumbed to the deadly virus, as well as former Primary and Secondary Education minister Aeneas Chigwedere.

The latest high-profile deaths from COVID-19 yesterday included former Zanu PF legislator for Mbare and ex-Lands and Resettlement deputy minister, Tendai Savanhu, Consumer Council of Zimbabwe boss Rosemary Siyachitema and High Court judge Justice Clement Phiri.

“Today, all MPs countrywide are fasting in support of our President Emmerson Mnangagwa, and the leadership of the country in the fight against COVID-19. It is important that each of us takes a few minutes to pray for our great nation,” Togarepi said.

He said the MPs were taking a cue from First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa’s calls for prayers.

“We said to ourselves, why don’t we, as representatives of the people, talk to God through fasting today so that God gives our leadership wisdom and ways to fight COVID-19,” Togarepi said.

“We are praying for all the ways that we can find, like getting a vaccine and giving wisdom to our scientists here in Zimbabwe and throughout the world to find solutions to COVID-19.”

He said the ruling party had also spoken to opposition MPs on the need for unity in prayer.

“It is for all Zimbabweans across the political divide, but you cannot say to other people come let us pray. They have their own ways of doing things. But I spoke to the MDC-T chief whip Paurina Mpariwa, and she said it was a noble idea and acknowledged that she was touched by the First Lady’s move to want to pray. As for Zanu PF MPs, all of them are in the same prayer mode today,” he said.

Despite the prayers, Zanu PF bigwigs stand accused of looting millions of dollars of COVID-19 funds and neglecting local health facilities.

The ruling party’s national chairperson Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri last year claimed COVID-19 was God’s punishment against the West for imposing sanctions on Zimbabwe. Newsday


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