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Villagers stuck as Simbanegavi withdraws grinding mills

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Villagers stuck as Simbanegavi withdraws grinding mills


Roseline Mutare

GUTU – Former Zanu PF MP Yeukai Simbanegavi has withdrawn the grinding mills she donated for use by villagers in Gutu North, where she was MP until the recent harmonized elections.
The grinding mills were removed from Nyarambi and Machawira business centres in Ward 12 Gutu East, while a third at Makudo in Ward 10 has not been working for the last four months, villagers have told The Mirror.
Joshua Maseva, a villager and community leader, confirmed the removals.
The dilemma that villagers now face is that Simbanegavi forced all grinding mills in the area to close because of her ridiculously low prices, and now villagers have nowhere to go.
Called for comment, Simbanegavi, who is now MP on a women’s quarter ticket, said the withdrawal of the grinding mills had nothing to do with The Mirror. She said, the grinding mills belonged to her, and she does as she pleases with them.
“Munondifonera makamira sani, hanty zvigayo zvacho ndezvangu, pandakazviisa maivepo here? (Who are you to be calling me? The grinding mills are mine and you were not even there when I installed them),” said Simbanegavi before cutting off.
Simbanegavi was MP for Gutu North from 2018 but she could not find a constituency after Gutu North was scuttled during the 2022 delimitation process.
She was supposed to face Matthew Takaona of the CCC, who then proceeded to contest on behalf of his party against Winston Chitando in Gutu Central.
Zanu PF MP for the area Benjamin Ganyiwa contradicted Simbanegavi and said all the grinding mills were still there. He went further to say that he had also brought in 26 similar grinding mills in the area.
“It is a total lie. All the six grinding mills installed by Simbanegavi are functioning as we speak, including 26 that I donated to make them 32,” said Ganyiwa.
Phillip Mahachi a former CCC chairman in Gutu North said Zanu PF’s politics is about power and not the people.
“One would think that these grinding mills were given to communities to empower and assist them but no, these grinding mills were just to buy votes. Why do you give something and take it back after you get what you want?” asked Mahachi.
CCC candidate for Gutu East, Gift Gonese said Simbanegavi and Ganyiwa are removing their grinding mills because they know that people didn’t vote for them.
“People did not vote for them. These people know deep down that they rigged the elections and now they are punishing those people for not voting for them. Our people must learn from this that Zanu PF does not like them. This party is just there to use them,” said Gonese.
“Simbanengavi’s grinding mills which appear to have only been a campaign gimmick charged 10c for 50kg of maize at a time when private millers charged 50c for the same. Faced with a shrinking clientele all grinding mills in the area packed out of business as they could not recoup costs.
“Simbanegavi has removed her grinding mills at Nyarambi and Machawira. The challenge is the grinding mills that were there were forced out of business and now we have no grinding services in the area”, Joshua Maseva said.
“Simbanegavi’s grinding mill at Makudo has not been working for the last four months”, said a woman who declined to be named.

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