The ruling Zanu PF is speeding up training of its members on how to construct and operationalize home-made ovens across the country in a bid to empower and build community resilience in the face of ongoing bread shortages, the party’s Deputy Youth League Secretary Lewis Matutu has said.
The make-shift cooking model sparked ridicule on various social media platforms after pictures of prototypes set up at its headquarters in Harare circulated on Whatsapp, Facebook and Twitter.
In an interview with 263Chat, Matutu said the project was gathering traction across the country with the training now cascading to all the districts across the country.
“Its nationwide, right now if go to Lupane you find them using it, if you go to Mberengwa, Chiredzi it’s all over and people are liking it, Some of the products are of good quality , so we are having fresh bread and buns, our people can make a living while Government is looking for other solutions,”
“The project is open to the women’s league, open to the war veterans, is open to the youth league, so it’s a program for everybody who would like to participate, so we have started at a smaller scale and trying to use free, available resources,” Mathuthu said.
“The oven is made up of simple materials which include brick and mortar and fire embers for heating. So far the inputs used for the training have been sourced by the party chair, Oppah Muchinguri.
“However the party intends to modify and modernize the ovens going forward.
“We are going to actually modernize those bakeries but for the meantime we have to make sure we empower the people. Since our Inputs are mainly flour from wheat, people will just need to look for wheat but the party through the national chairman had to source inputs for training so that people can be trained on how to make the bread and they can always source their own,” said Matutu.
The ‘rudimentary’ bakeries have received widespread ridicule particularly from the main opposition party, MDC, with party Secretary General, Charlton Hwende taking to Twitter to describe the baking method as of “Stone Age”nature.
But the ZANU PF youth leader hit back at critics saying they are bent on derailing people-centric initiatives such as this one.
“There are some people who have this hypocrisy and they are anti-progress, people who think what they think are the right things. This is a solution to a problem we are having as a country. Bread won’t change shape or taste because of where it has been prepared. This is helping many people and the bread is cheaper. We have people with a mentality that wish for things to keep getting tougher so that people keep complaining in distress that’s why they are not happy with good initiatives such as these. But no one cares about those people as long as our people are happy we don’t care. That’s nonsense,” fumed Matutu.F