Mnangagwa is not presidential material comments haunt Kaseke

Mnangagwa is not presidential material comments haunt Kaseke
Published: 21 April 2018 (223 Views)
Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive officer Dr Karikoga Kaseke has dismissed as malicious, an online news report claiming he said President Mnangagwa was not presidential material during a media briefing on the Head of State's successful trip to China early this month.

The story, which was originally done by 263chat.com under the heading: "Mnangagwa is not Presidential Material: Kaseke", was also carried by Zimeye and headed: "Zanu-PF's Kaseke says Mnangagwa is not presidential material, he's a businessman."

During his address to the media on the historic China trip that saw several business executives from the private sector traveling with the President, Dr Kaseke had said: "President Mnangagwa was not talking like he is a head of State but talking like a businessman, like a CEO. . ."

In an interview yesterday, Dr Kaseke, who revealed that he has since instructed his lawyers to take legal action against 263chat, said the story could be part of a bigger political ploy.

"A lot of things are happening at Government and when you see yourself being set against your own President and you are a mere parastatal head, it is not only shocking but devastatingly damaging to my person, the organisation I lead, ZTA; and the ministry.

"We found the business community to have been silent on the business trip to China and we thought we should add our voice, our business voice to the President's trip. ZTA, Zimbabwe Investment Authority and ZimTrade were tasked to do that. The purpose was to brief the media and the nation on what transpired, adding to what the President had already said.

"It would be very strange that where there are three parastatal heads who have invited the media, one of them stands up to denigrate the President.

"I am Zanu-PF and I am not G40. I have heard Chamisa campaigning as the biggest opponent (in the forthcoming elections) and he has never said President Mnangagwa is not presidential material. Even G40, which was fighting me, has never said that. Jonathan Moyo says a lot of things but he has not said the President is not presidential material," Dr Kaseke said.

"Why put such a headline. The headline is false, misleading, and malicious and the motive has subjected us to speculation. One can speculate what they want and you can forgive them."

He added that 263chat, which has since retracted the story, has written to the Chief Secretary to explain that they got their facts wrong. The letter, Dr Kaseke revealed, was copied to the offices of the Vice-Presidents and special advisor to the President, Ambassador Chris Mutsvangwa and presidential spokesperson Mr George Charamba.

He however said he would continue to seek legal restitution as the damage control would serve little purpose.

"I have been asked by colleagues about the malicious story. I'm made to believe social media hits could be the motive. But how can they sell out a whole nation by making a false headline for only US5 cents. I hear they get US5 cents per hit.

"Up to now I am still shocked, I can't believe what happened. I have been trying to get to terms with what has happened," Dr Kaseke said.

"I called the owner of the news site, the editor and the reporter and the owner, Nigel Mugamu, said 'the story is devastatingly damaging to yourself'. I said it was not only damaging to me but the country and the party. I don't know whether it was a matter of stupidity or lack of education."

- zimpapers

Tags: Mnangagwa, Kaseke, ZTA,
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