PM Tsvangirai Bribery Scandal: Say It Ain’t So

The government rag and a couple of online news sites have been running a story in which the Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has been accused of bribing editors of private newspapers in order to have them focus less on his indiscretions, with particular reference to the Locadia Karimatsenga saga.

I fully expect that the editors of these private newspapers will fully deny it but bribery of journalists and editors is one of those taboo topics in Zimbabwe. People in the fraternity know it is happening but they won’t talk about it. It is the same way that we will know of certain ministers’ indiscretions and we will pretend they don’t exist.

However if it is true that the PM Tsvangirai who has been calling for freedom of the press for the longest period is guilty of said bribery, then it is so unfortunate on so many levels. It makes a joke of journalism in Zimbabwe. It makes a mockery of the advancement of the pluralisation of the Zimbabwean media. Also, it will mean that the office of the Prime Minister will have been compromised.

An ugly side has risen its head in a pioneering group on Facebook, Proudly Zimbabwean, where the discussion has become tribal. The story was broken in the group by someone who extracted it from Bulawayo 24 News.  The story was dismissed by some because it came from Matabeleland news source which was unfairly branded an MDC-N mouth-peice. There was a disturbing lack of interest in having the facts investigated.

In any other democracy, there would be a demand for proof based on a thorough investigation.

I would like to believe that he didn’t. That is what what I would really like to believe because that will make me feel better. However, I can’t help but wonder…