The Zimbabwe Peace Project (ZPP) has urged distributers of food aid not to use aid as a political weapon in communities.
In it’s February monthly monitoring report ZPP recorded that politicization of food aid is a disadvantage to others who in most are not affiliated to the ruling party, ZANU PF.
This again breeds ground for violence in societies.
A total of 38 such cases were reported and the aid was largely from the Department of Social Welfare.
“The continued discrimination in aid distribution further divides communities and is breeding ground for animosity and violent conflict. Food must never be used as a weapon against political opponents,” reads the report.
ZPP called for the department of social welfare to ensure that food is not politicized and is shared equally among everyone in different communities.
Food aid must not be politicized; all deserving beneficiaries must receive their allocation.
In other communities, they were told new mealie meal coupons are for those who belong to ZANU PF only and not for those who are members of opposition parties.
“In communities such as Nhlangano village in Tsholotsho South villagers were informed that the new mealie-meal coupon scheme is meant for Zanu PF members only. Jabulisa Mnkandla, a Zanu PF activist informed the community that opposition members who would want maize or mealie-meal coupons should first register with Zanu PF; and that without a Zanu PF card one would not benefit.”
This also led to opposition party leaders being warned and being told to join the party or receive no aid. Mealie meal coupons were manipulated for the benefit of ZANU PF.
Traditional leaders are now also monopolizing food aid distribution. Beneficiaries have had to chant the ZANU PF slogan for them to get food aid.
Despite the provision of the Section 77 of the Constitution in addition to equality and non discrimination in section 56, food aid continues to be manipulated.
Due to the poor rains received in 2018 and 2019, a large number of citizens are food insecure.
This has resulted in them having to depend on food aid rather than on their own farm produce.