FORMER Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial chairperson, Temba Mliswa has sensationally claimed President Robert Mugabe is surrounded by gay ministers, but has failed to take action against them, it has been reported.
Mliswa told South African television channel ANN7 on Thursday night that while Mugabe was aware of the “questionable behaviour” of some of his ministers, he has never made any effort to investigate the issue.
“I have a problem with President Mugabe because he is a hypocrite, who pretends to hate gays by day, but hobnobs with them at night. He is surrounded by gays but claims to hate them with a passion,” he alleged. “I do not have a problem if someone comes out in the open and declares they are gay, but I do not like people who pretend to hate gays, but work closely with them.
“Despite public pronouncements to the effect that they are worse than animals, the President has not investigated or taken any action against gay practitioners around him. It is also public knowledge that former President Canaan Banana was gay, but served in the same government as Mugabe.”
Mugabe’s spokesperson George Charamba told NewsDay Mliswa should “provide proof of his allegations”.
“The spotlight is on the maker of the allegation, not the victims. The maker of allegations has to prove that the allegations are founded for the President to take notice let alone begin to be exercised about them,” he said.
“Why don’t you ask him to favour the public and the President with real actionable information to present a case? I am sure boldness is not in short supply in he who make such drastic allegations and in public.”
Mugabe has never hidden his disdain for gays and has in the past described then as “anti-God and worse than pigs, birds and dogs”.
Only last month Mugabe shocked the UN General Assembly while making his official address telling global leaders “we are not gays”.
Diverting from his prepared speech describing the UN as an old-fashioned organisation needing reform, Mugabe accused western dangling aid tied to conditions to accept culturally unacceptable norms.
It is not the first time that Mliswa has labelled some leaders in Zanu PF as gay. The acerbic politician was kicked out of Zanu PF alongside former Vice-President Joice Mujuru and other stalwarts of the ex-guerrilla movement on allegations of plotting against veteran ruler Mugabe.
As the political upheavals reached fever pitch around September last year and it became clear that the group led by Mujuru would not survive until the congress in December, Mliswa alleged Zanu PF had been hijacked by “gay-gangsters”.