ZANU-PF youth leaders, who spearheaded the violent clashes at the party district offices last week leading to the abandonment of primary elections to choose a candidate for the vacant Kwekwe Central parliamentary seat, have reportedly gone into hiding to avoid arrest.
Party insiders told NewsDay that some of the ring, leaders had sought refuge at a top government official’s farm in the Midlands city.
The youths assaulted police and Zanu-PF top officials, including national political commissar Victor Matemadanda, following a stalemate in the primary elections that pitted Kandros Mugabe and Energy Ncube.
Retired army Colonel Panganai Kahuni, who was presiding over the internal polls was caught in the crossfire and beaten up by the rowdy youths.
The youths also damaged police cars and injured some officers.
NewsDay has established that State security agents had compiled a list of the ring, leaders, who are said to have gone into hiding.
Some of the names on the list include Tapiwa Muto, Tapiwa Muganhu, Moore Muzira, Makomborero Mlambo, Peter Mwale, Takunda Chikwanda, Dennis Chikwanda, Mclean Nyamucherera, Petros Makombe, Blessing Chikwira and Chamu Mugandani.
“The youths were bragging that they would never be arrested because they are close to State Security minister Owen Ncube.
“However, information leaked to the youth leaders that the State security agents, especially the army, were incensed by the violence that saw senior officers being pelted with stones at the party offices and an order has been issued for all of them to be brought to book,” a source said.
“So the youth leaders have gone into hiding. Some like Tapiwa Muto, Tapiwa Muganhu and Petros Makombe are reportedly hiding at minister Ncube’s farm. All is not well in Kwekwe.”
Minister Ncube said: “May the police just go to my farm to check if they are hiding at my farm.”
Midlands police spokesperson Inspector Joel Goko yesterday declined to comment on the issue.
“On that issue, you will have to speak to national, spokesperson (Assistant Commissioner Paul) Nyathi. It’s a national issue, you can talk to the commissioner on that, but from my understanding, the matter is in court,” he said.
But Nyathi said: “That issue has already been commented on by the Midlands provincial police spokesperson (Goko). Kindly talk to him.” -Bulawayo24