The scandal, which has touched many of Zimbabwe’s political and economic heavyweights, began making its rounds in the country after top big wigs especially from the former ruling party, Zanu (PF), were alleged to have leaked sensitive information to the United States Government’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Charles Ray.
The big wigs coming from Zanu (PF) include Vice President, Joice Mujuru, largely seen as Zimbabwe’s first woman President and the first in line “when and if” the incumbent President Robert Mugabe departs, Zimbabwe National Army (ZNA) Commander, Constantine Chiwenga, better known by Zezuru’s as “Zim 2”, Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor, Dr Gideon Gono, who is also President Mugabe’s “personal banker”, Amai Grace Mugabe, the President’s second wife, former Minister of Education and ZIDECO boss, Sikhanyiso Ndhlovu, the Minister of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Employment, Saviour Kasukuwere, , Minister and businessman Sylvester Nguni, and Non Constituency Member of Parliament (MP) Professor Jonathan Moyo, who has very close links with Zanu (PF).
The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) led by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has already told Zimbabweans to “forget about WikiLeaks and worry about their future”.
Caught in the scandal is Trevor Ncube, a media baron, who also quickly dismissed the “WikiLeaks” scandal and revelations saying his ownership of the Alpha Media Holdings Group is “above board”.
“I wonder what we would be talking about today if there were no ‘WikiLeaks stories’,” said a stockbroker in an interview in Harare.”Everyone is now talking about ‘WikiLeaks’ this and ‘WikiLeaks’ that. There is no news in the newspapers other than that so-called ‘WikiLeaks’ scandal.”
Last Sunday virtually all of Zimbabwe’s newspapers lead with the “WikiLeak” scandal story with each taking a slice of what each thought was the juiciest part.
“What ‘WikiLeaks’ has done is to tear apart Zanu (PF) and separate further its many camps,” a senior journalist said in an interview.”Whether the allegations are true or not the party will have to re-build its tattered image.”
Another said: “It touched even the MDC-T and its President, Morgan Tsvangirai, and so it must be true. The US Ambassador is not telling lies. Don’t you know that all US envoys are alleged to belong to the CIA and so there is nothing really shocking about a US Ambassador simply squealing about what top big wigs are telling him here. It’s juicy for him to do so.”
Others interviewed pointed out that Zimbabwean scribes had run out of “news” and were simply “regurgitating” what is in the “WikiLeaks” documents currently making their rounds worldwide.
‘WikiLeaks is about chefs and how they are using our money,” said a street kid in an exclusive interview speaking in Shona when asked about what he thought about the scandal and what is all about.
“It is about how ministers lied to our great President, VaMugabe,” said another, chewing a piece of bubble gum which he had picked up after it had been dropped by a motorist driving away at the intersection.
“I hope President Mugabe takes them all to jail if they said that he is dying. How can you say such a thing – especially if you are his friend,” he continued, speaking in Shona.
“I wonder how all those guys feel and how they behave in Cabinet meetings today knowing full well that President Mugabe no longer trusts them,” said a top businessman. “It must be fireworks in Cabinet right now. I wish I was a Cabinet Minister attending, to see how they (ministers) are facing the President.”
Whatever the pundits say about the “WikiLeaks” “alleged” cable scandal, it has virtually affected and touched all our lives in struggling Zimbabwe.