Journalists at two newspapers confirmed Chinotimba’s “very brief” visit to their offices at 1 Kwame Nkrumah Ave, but the purpose was not clear. Clad in an all blue outfit, Chinotimba at first appeared to be in a no-nonsense mood but later calmed down.

“He came to our newsroom just before lunch. He was holding a small document, possibly a letter to the editor. He seemed to be in a hurry, and was a bit arrogant when confronted about the purpose of his visit,” said one journalist at the paper.  “He was so arrogant and claimed to be in a hurry. He had brief meetings with senior editors at The Standard.”

The journalist said Chinotimba – the outgoing vice chairperson of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association – was holding a copy of The Zimbabwean newspaper, which for some reason he appeared to mistake for The Standard. The Zimbabwean is published in the United Kingdom but distributed in Zimbabwe through South Africa.

And when a journalist at the Standard asked him for his new mobile number, Chinoz is understood to have told the journalist that he was “still using the same number yakabiwa naMinister Mahlangu (which was stolen by Minister Mahlangu)”.

For the better part of this year, he was embroiled in a cellphone theft dispute with deputy youth minister Thamsanqa Mahlangufrom the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, whom he claimed had stolen his phone at a government function. Mahlangu was acquitted of the charges.

Chinotimba has been involved in all sorts of controversies since he rose to fame at the height of the farm invasions. His name also featured prominently among the perpetrators of political violence in the run-up to the internationally disputed presidential run-off election. Radio VOP