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THE opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) says Grace Mugabe should produce evidence she paid the Zupco for buses she “abused” during her nationwide “succession” rallies which started last year.
PDP, led by former finance minister Tendai Biti, made the call on Tuesday after it emerged that Zupco had sued Chegutu East legislator, Dexter Nduna (Zanu PF) for US$25,000 which he is failing to pay for using the parastatal’s buses during the election.
Nduna hired 27 buses to transport his supporters during his 2013 election campaign.
“In fact, this case opens a Pandora’s Box as to how Zanu PF made use of state resources in order to massively tilt the electoral landscape in its favour ahead of the polls and also to rig the outcome of the same,” said the PDP in a statement.
“If low-ranked members of Zanu PF like Dexter Nduna could have unfettered access to government facilities for their own use without paying a dime for it, what more was advanced to Robert Mugabe’s campaign?
“While Zupco is being professional in pursuing its payments from crooks like Nduna, it goes without saying that the same troubled public transport operator must also pursue payment from the likes of Grace Mugabe whose abuse of state resources is legendary”.
Last year Grace did not only use Zupco buses but went on to brand them with her images when she went on a nationwide campaign insulting then vice president Joice Mujuru who was later fired.
Then local government minister, Ignatius Chombo, defended the widely condemned ‘branding’, claiming the First Lady was paying for the buses.
“We condemn in the strongest of these reports of Zanu PF elites abusing the Zimbabwe United Passenger Company (Zupco) buses for their political activities,” the PDP added.
“We have always held that Zanu PF is abusing government resources as witnessed by the recent partisan dishing out of agricultural implements sourced through a public loan from Brazil by the First lady, Grace Mugabe.” source-newzimbabwe