A ZANU PF legislator, who is also the Deputy Information Minister, Energy Mutodi, “finally” apologised for his remarks which were deemed offensive by some Zimbabweans.
Mutodi on Monday suggested that millions of Zimbabweans who are of Ndebele-speakers were South Africans who fled from Tshaka, a 19th century Zulu king.
On Wednesday, the Goromonzi West MP deleted the video and used Twitter to apologise. He wrote:
My tweet saying about three million Zimbabweans were of South African descent has riled some Zimbabweans. The tweet has been misunderstood, giving political capital to the opposition.
I wish to withdraw the tweet and unreservedly issue my apologies to whoever was affected.
In the video that stoked anger among Zimbabweans, Mutodi had insinuated that Ndebele people were refugees in Zimbabwe. He said:
For South Africa, you will find that here in Zimbabwe, if you didn’t know, just about 1836 we accommodated thousands of South Africans who came into Zimbabwe fleeing from (King) Shaka, and they were being led by Mzilikazi.
They settled on the western parts of the country, in Matabeleland. As I am speaking right now, at least three million Zimbabweans have South African origin.
The remarks received a backlash from the generality of Zimbabweans, with some even questioning why Mutodi was still a Minister after all the gaffes he has hitherto made.