The Zimbabwe Peace Project (ZPP) has threatened Zanu PF director of Information Tafadzwa Mugwadi with a US$50 000 lawsuit if he fails to issue an apology or substantiate claims he made against the organisation’s director Jestina Mukoko.
Responding to the Zimbabwe Peace Project April 2022 Monthly Monitoring Report implicating Zanu PF in human rights violations, Mugwadi is said to have made statements alleging that Mukoko was responsible for the sporadic needless orgies of violence targeted at security officers, Government buildings, businesses and individual citizens.
The human rights monitoring group said they have since written to Mugwadi in his capacity as the ruling party’s director of information to provide evidence of the claims.
“ZPP, through her lawyer, Musa Kika, who is the Executive Director of the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum (The Forum), has since written to Mugwadi in his capacity as the Zanu PF Director of Information demanding, among other things, that Mugwadi either provides the evidence of his claims, or substantiate your claims or issue a public apology, failure of which, he would be facing a US$50,000 lawsuit. Zanu PF has responded seeking further details about the issue. ZPP is a member of The Forum.
“In the letter of demand written to Kika contends that Mukoko is a well-known human rights activist. She is a former television personality and is accordingly easily recognised by many Zimbabweans, so as a result of Mugwadi’s utterances, her standing in the society has greatly diminished. ZPP is a human rights monitoring and documentation organization that has continued to expose evidence-based statistics of human right abuses in Zimbabwe,” said ZPP.
The Zanu PF director of information is not new to controversy relating to his alleged ‘reckless statements’.
Early last year he was embroiled in a storm with the South Africa’s ruling party African National Congress (ANC) after he threatened to expose the party’s alleged sinister agenda behind its delegation’s trip to Zimbabwe in 2020.
The threat was a reaction to what Mugwadi described as hostile reportage against Zanu-PF by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC)’s foreign editor Sophie Mokoena.