Zimbabwe: Zanu-PF Youths Leaders Storm National Foods, Harass Managers

Zanu-PF youths, led by party deputy youth secretary Lewis Matutu, Tuesday stormed the National Foods' main depot in Harare's Workington industrial area where they reportedly demanded to be shown the white run company's employment register, leaving company managers shaken.

Zanu PF sources said Matutu, who was accompanied by party youth league secretary for administration Tendai Chirau, "in a typical militia style" further rebuked the food giant for failing to recruit party youths in all their branches nationwide.

"They demanded to see the employment contracts and quota system of the company from the managing director Mike Lashbrooke," said the source.

"Lashbrooke refused to grant their demands saying the youths did not have any mandate under any laws to make such demands.

"They then demanded to know why National Foods did not consider recruiting some Zanu PF youths as part of their recruitment policy."

Attempts to seek comment from Matutu were unsuccessful as the Zanu PF youth leader was not picking his mobile phone.

WhatsApp questions sent via his mobile were seen by the young politician who did not respond to them either.

However, Lashbrooke was evasive when efforts to seek comment from him were also made.

"Thanks for your question," said the National Foods boss via WhatsApp, "As the largest food producer in the country, we engage various stakeholders all day every day. Unfortunately I cannot comment on specific engagements thanks and regards. Mike."

The Zanu PF youth league this week released a list of what it claimed were corrupt party politicians and associated business leaders who were allegedly sabotaging the economy.

They vowed to pressure the targeted politicians to come clean on corruption accusations if they still wished to keep their Zanu PF positions.

It could however not be readily established if the visit to National Foods was part of the militant group's controversial anti-corruption crusade.

Observers see the move by Zanu PF youths as contradicting their party leader Emmerson Mnangagwa's Zimbabwe is open for business mantra.

Mnangagwa, since taking over power from his long-time ally, former President Robert Mugabe through a coup in November 2017, has been globetrotting inviting whites to come and open businesses in Zimbabwe.

The same way the Mnangagwa party youths have gone about their business could be seen as a replica of farm and company invasions of the early 2000s.

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