Blessing Chebundo, the former opposition MDC legislator who humiliated current Zimbabwe leader President Emmerson Mnangagwa in the 2000 parliamentary elections for Kwekwe is at it again, after he allegedly abused funds meant for a Zanu PF women’s empowerment project in Kwekwe.
As NYASHADZASHE MAJONI writes, female Zanu PF supporters from the Midlands town are up in arms with Chebundo following a ‘botched’ empowerment project under the auspices of First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa.
The former opposition MP, who recently dumped the Nelson Chamisa-led MDC Alliance to join the ruling Zanu PF is widely known for handing Mnangagwa a humiliating blow after he out-balloted the incumbent president while contesting as an underdog in the 2000 parliamentary elections.
But, as reports from Kwekwe suggest, scores of female Zanu PF supporters who were set to benefit from a project overseen by Chebundo are now baying for his head after they were allegedly duped of various amounts in a project fronted by the former MP.
“We were asked to pay US$9 each as a group from this ward and he (Chebundo) told us that the project would get underway as soon as possible. And, that was in April but we haven’t seen anything yet,” said a source who refused to be named.
According to the source, the payments were going to be used in the opening of bank accounts for the beneficiaries and issuance of passport size photos.
During a meeting held in Amaveni suburb at the residence of Catherine Bhobho, a former opposition MDC-M aspiring candidate for Kwekwe Central, Chebundo who was in the company of several opposition activists who defected to Zanu PF, is said to have introduced his delegation as ’emissaries from the office of the First Lady’.
However, six months down the line, nothing has materialized yet and Zwnews has it on good authority that scores of female Zanu PF supporters recently besieged Bhobho’s residence in Amaveni enquiring about the ‘whereabouts of their benefits’
“No passport photos were taken and there hasn’t been any feedback from the committee spearheading the project”.
The beneficiaries, sources say, were promised that they would have their bank accounts opened with the Women’s Bank.
While she was stingy with details when this reporter spoke to her, Bhobho confirmed that she was last week confronted by a group of irate Zanu PF supporters who expressed discontent over the snail’s pace of the project.
“It is, indeed, true that I was approached by the intended beneficiaries of the project who wanted to know how far we had moved in terms of implementing the project. They have repeatedly been coming here and I also managed to talk with VaChebundo who promised me that everything was going to be in good shape sooner rather than later,” she said.
However, Chebundo could not be immediately reached on his mobile number during the time of going to press.
more details to follow…