The chief told party officials that the party can no longer hold any political meetings in the area claiming Friday is a customary sacred day known in the Shona language as Chisi.
“On Sunday this week the chief summoned us to his court and told us to stop a meeting which we wanted to hold on Friday at Kutamburika business centre. The chief said he has been instructed with immediate effect not to sanction any political activity held on a Chisi day,” said Charles Mashingaidze, the party’s ward chairperson for the area.
Mashingaidze questioned the motive and source of the new directive which he insisted is a ploy by Zanu (PF) to curtail the MDC from campaigning in the area.
“From my own understanding chisi is a day where people are not supposed to work in their fields because of cultural reasons. Why change the rules now when previously every political party has been holding meetings on this day? We are monitoring the situation and see if the same applies to Zanu (PF),” he said.
The MDC district coordinator for Chimanimani Pardon Maguta said the party will defy the chief‘s directive.
“Chiefs should not abuse their traditional positions by getting involved in cheap politics. Over the past weeks we have observed a trend where Zanu (PF) is using chiefs to settle political scores. This is what exactly chief Zimunda is trying to do and that we will not accept,” said Maguta.
About three weeks ago following Prime Minister Tsvangirai’s botched marriage with Locadia Karimatsenga, a Chiweshe chief, Luscious Chitsande unsuccessfully tried to summon the PM to his traditional court for allegedly marrying in the traditionally holy month of November.
After the incident another chief from Masvingo province, Ephias Munodawafa also attempted to drag the MDC-T legislator for Masvingo central, Jeffreyson Chitando to his traditional court.