Deputy Information Minister Energy Mutodi caused outrage on Tuesday after labelling an MDC official allegedly attacked by Zanu PF youths in Kwekwe a “pr0stitute”.
The MDC said its Midlands Youth Assembly chairperson Sekai Marashe was taken to a local Zanu PF office and brutally assaulted.
“She was abducted to the Zanu PF headquarters in Kwekwe and assaulted. She sustained serious injuries,” the MDC said in a statement.
Posting a picture of Marashe with a swollen face, Mutodi commented: “No matter how democratic our government can be, we can never guarantee that drunkards and prostitutes stop fighting.”
The denialism embedded in Mutodi’s tweet has become the hallmark of President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government, which spent the last week denying that armed men were kidnapping opposition politicians and rights activists in the middle of the night and torturing them.
Last week, the foul-mouthed Mutodi lambasted comedienne Gonyeti and said,
“Actress: Someone who plays the part of a character. A performer etc,” government spokesman Nick Mangwana also tweeted on August 23 after armed men wearing masks seized Gonyeti from home and tortured her before dumping her barely clothed.
Mutodi, who is not renowned for intelligent quips, drew fire from Zimbabweans on Twitter for his latest remarks.
MDC secretary general Charlton Hwende said: “This is exactly why it’s so difficult for women to participate in politics. This is too low even for Zanu PF standards. This lady is one of the few women leading a provincial youth structure in the Midlands, one of our biggest political provinces. She is not a prostitute but a mother.”
“That he remains in government is testament of the quality of leadership we have. A leader who tolerates Mutodi and still allows him to remain in post is complicit and responsible indirectly,” said one Twitter user in reply to Mutodi.
Another added: “I also hope you know drunkards and prostitutes vote to be protected. Unless you say drunkards and prostitutes didn’t vote for Zanu PF? Every citizen has the same rights to be protected!”