THE Zanu PF-aligned Zimbabwe Congress of Students Union (Zicosu) has been accused of turning public lecturers at universities into campaign platforms for the ruling party, where Finance deputy minister Terrence Mukupe is invited as guest speaker.
By NQOBANI NDLOVU
The allegations resurfaced last week after Zicosu announced its plans to roll out the #EDHasMyVote campaign for President Emmerson Mnangagwa in all institutions of higher education.
A recent public lecture organised by Zicosu at the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) attracted a backlash after members of the Zimbabwe National Students Association (Zinasu) accused Mukupe of openly campaigning for Zanu PF.
“Just a few weeks back, the Bulawayo Zicosu leadership made us (students) believe that Mukupe’s public lecture was aimed at reshaping the future of finance, but it ended up a political rally with Zanu PF sloganeering,” a Zinasu executive member said.
Zinasu secretary-general Ashly Pfunye confirmed the students’ body was worried over the abuse of university public lectures to campaign for Zanu PF.
“It is not Zinasu which is accusing Zicosu of using public lectures to campaign for Zanu PF, but it is the students, ordinary students, who can clearly see that these are ruling party campaign rallies,” Pfunye said.
“And in view of that, we believe the minister has to review and engage students on a non-partisan manner.”
But Zicosu treasurer-general Godknows Mdari yesterday dismissed the accusations as “disgraceful and offensive”.
“The allegations from the social media are categorically false and represent just the latest attempt by the MDC-T-aligned Zinasu to divide this (Zicosu) administration,” Mdhari said.
Efforts to contact Mukupe for a comment were fruitless as his mobile phone was unreachable.