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Zimbabwe's Movement for Democratic Change Dismisses Food Politics Charge

ZANU-PF Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa accused the MDC formation of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai of partisanship in food distribution in Manicaland, but the MDC said Chinamasa merely has his eye on a vacant House seat there

The Movement for Democratic Change formation of Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai has rejected charges by a prominent ZANU-PF politician that it is politicizing humanitarian aid distributions in Makoni district, Manicaland.

The accusation was launched by Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa, a resident of the Makoni Central constituency.

He filed the complaint with the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee or JOMIC, a sort of ombudsman for the national unity government, charging that the MDC and the Irish humanitarian agency GOAL were distributing food along partisan lines with the MDC was handing out leaflets to villagers getting aid.

A source in the monitoring and implementation committee confirmed that a complaint had been received from Chinamasa and that investigators were sent to Makoni last week to meet with local political leaders. He said the investigators exonerated the Irish organization of any wrongdoing while resolving that political parties and politicians should stay away from food distributions.

MDC Manicaland Provincial Spokesman Pishai Muchauraya told VOA Studio 7 reporter Jonga Kandemiiri that Chinamasa has his eye on the Makoni Central seat that was left vacant by the death of John Nyamande.

Chinamasa could not be reached for a response to Muchauray's contention that the food-politicization accusation was politically motivated.