THE Tyson Wabantu movement has blamed its failure to register any meaningful growth since 2019 on Covid-19 and associated lockdown measures aimed at stemming the spread of the disease.
Former Zanu-PF members, particularly from the G40 faction, unveiled the “Tyson Wabantu” movement in Bulawayo during roadshows held in the city’s high-density suburbs in 2019.
Self exiled former cabinet minister Saviour Kasukuwere was reported to be behind the movement, a claim he did not publicly deny.
However, the movement has evidently not registered any meaningful growth with Andifasi Banda, the Bulawayo Tyson WaBantu interim provincial mobilisation and recruitment secretary, blaming the failure on Covid-19.
“We had lined up quite a number of grassroots mobilisation programmes before the lockdowns were announced in March 2020. All the plans we had were, however, put on ice as a result,” Banda said.
“We had to shelve all our programmes and postpone every meeting we had lined up as a movement.
“We are, however, using social media platforms and having house meetings in our districts to keep in touch with our members.”
In January last year, Banda was arrested and taken to court facing charges of distributing the movement’s fliers in the city without police clearance.
According to the state’s case, Banda, who had applied for police clearance on behalf of the movement to hold the roadshow, “failed to comply with the direction or condition under which the procession or public demonstration is authorised.
“Unlawfully failed to do so and went on to organise the procession of persons and vehicles where fliers written #Tyson Wabantu for My Hope, My Choice, My Voice were distributed in pursuit of a common purpose of demonstrating support for a political organisation namely National Patriotic Front (NPF).”
Banda is also the national commander of the Zimbabwe National Service Graduates Association (Zinasga), an association representing graduates of the controversial National Youth Service (NYS).
Zinasga consists of mainly disgruntled or expelled Zanu-PF members, particularly those linked to the G40 faction. It is an affiliate of the NPF. – Standard 🔺