A Zanu PF prominent activist who played a stellar role in President Mnangagwa’s rise to power has denied influencing Susan Mutami to report Mnangagwa to police for sexual abuse.
Australia-based Reason Wafawarova was a fierce critic of Mugabe’s abuse of war veterans during the late strongman’s last days in power, and actively pushed for Mugabe’s departure. But Wafawarova has now turned into a critic of the 80-year-old Zimbabwean leader Mnangagwa, who he often labels as worse than Mugabe.
Allegations that Wafawarova is weaponising Mutami’s case against Mnangagwa emerged in some Zanu PF WhatsApp groups after Wafawarova suggested that the young lady could seek legal recourse in Australia if she felt she won’t get justice in Zimbabwe.
Coincidentally, Mutami is also based in Australia where she has been living since 2009.
The messages were being shared in both the Herbert Chitepo School of Ideology and the ED Mnangagwa 2023 Campaign WhatsApp groups. Some of the discussions on Wafawarova bordered on factionalism in the ruling party. Wafawarova is accused of “always criticising” Mnangagwa while leaving Chiwenga untouched.
Another prominent politician queried why Susan’s accusations gathered steam the same weak pro-Chiwenga groups in the ruling party were making noise about Mnangagwa’s reluctance to hand over power after one term as he previously promised.
In a long statement, Wafawarova has however issued a rebuttal of accusations against him by his Zanu-PF comrades. HourlyHits publishes his statement in full below.
Let me start by saying I have not met, talked to, or communicated in any way with one Susan Vivian Mutami, a 34 year old Australian woman originally from Kwekwe, Zimbabwe.
I haven’t been on Facebook for the past two days, and I have had people asking me about my role if any, in the reported case where Ms Mutami is reported to have made a police report with Queensland Police Services regarding a case of alleged historical child sexual molestation or rape, dating back 19 years when Ms Mutami was 15.
The alleged perpetrator is the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa.
Without getting much into the detail of the allegations, let me categorically state I have not played any role in influencing the direction of this case, apart from suggesting here on social media that victims of similar crimes perpetrated in countries where they can prove they can’t get a fair trial have an option to pursue extra territorial jurisdiction.
Essentially this is when a country in another jurisdiction decides to prisecute an accused person in another jurisdiction because it is satisfied the perpetrator may never face justice where the alleged crime was committed, or when the victim of the alleged crime is a citizen of the country opting to exercise extra territorial jurisdiction.
In Ms Mutami’s case both options apply, given the social standing of the alleged perpetrator.
Belgium once announced it had taken a decision to exercise its right to extra territorial jurisdiction over allegations levelled against Israeli General Ariel Sharon, and they announced if he travelled to Belgium or through Belgium they would arrest him and put him on trial.
The US responded by threatening to pull out NATO Headquarters from Belgium if the threat was carried out.
A few countries threatened to do the same with George W Bush’s alleged war crimes in Iraq after the US President left office.
Ms Mutami reported her case to the police service of a state in Australia, not the Australian Federal Police.
Like any other case the police will assess the allegations, ask for evidence and decide whether or not to refer the case to Federal Police.
Federal Police will investigate as well, most likely contact the accused, and if there are grounds to go to trial, charges can or may be pressed against the accused.
The accused can be represented by lawyers in absentia or can attend court if they choose to.
If the accused ignores the court summons, trial may proceed in absentia.
I notice Ms Mutami has a traceable record of the alleged case on line, including several times she explicitly exonerated the accused of any wrongdoing, including with the media.
I also notice Ms Mutami has a colourful, if not dramatic traceable sexual history on line, involving at least 33 high profile men in Harare alone.
The police will most likely assess factuality, credibility, intention, motivation, and any other relevant aspects related to this matter.
- Reason Wafawarova