The rowdy youths accused chief Murinye of instructing his people not to donate gifts for President Robert Mugabe’s birthday party which is expected to be held this weekend. The chief was left for dead when the youths assaulted him with logs, clenched fists, sjamboks and knobkerries at a party function at Boroma school.
Mugabe turned 87 years olf on Monday.
Zanu (PF) youths have been moving around the rural areas in the province demanding villagers to pay US$10 in cash or donate their livestock in form of chickens, goats and even cattle for the president’s traditional lavish bash.
Radio VOP has been told that the chief had advised the people in his area that the donations for the President’s birthday were not compulsory and told those who could not afford not to worry themselves.
His sentiments did not go down well with the youths who labelled him a sell-out and an Movement Democratic Change chief.
Although Masvingo Police spokesperson, Inspector Tinaye Matake refused to comment over the matter, a police officer at Muchakata who declined to be named, said the youths were still in custody as some of them were still on the run.
“We have arrested some of them but we can’t tell you their number and names as this will jeopardize investigations as some of them are on the run and we have launched a man hunt,” said the source.
The police source added that the Chief was in critical condition in the ICU as he was said to have sustained serious internal injuries during the beatings.
The Morgan Tsvangirai led MDC-T Masvngo central Legislator, Jefferson Chitando condemned Zanu (PF) for victimising traditional leaders who were perceived opposition sympathisers.
“It is sad to note that this is the same party that is ever preaching about respecting traditional leaders in our communities.”