Breaking News

Airlifted leather sofas trigger PR disaster as Mnangagwa meets Idai victims

by Staff reporter
22 March 2019 | 3718 Views
President Emmerson Mnangagwa made his way to Manicaland this week to take in the damage from Cyclone Idai and meet with officials responding to the disaster, but the trip was sullied by featherbeddings flown in for his comfort, including leather sofas.

Mnangagwa, who cut short his visit to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to fly back to the country, highlighted the "extraordinary work" done by local first responders who worked around the clock to rescue residents stranded by high water in a place that had not flooded in years.

Mnangagwa  visited the affected areas aboard a military helicopter and was surrounded by an unusually high security detail swarming around him and preventing the traumatised villagers from getting any closer to the strongman, who survived a bomb attack last year. He visited the recovery effort before surveying some of the damage around the most severely affected parts of the Manicaland Province.

He visited emergency management officials, and spoke at an impromptu rally where security details struggled to push villagers away who wanted to shake his hands.

There was widespread resentment when one of the choppers airlifted black leather sofas where Mnangagwa was to recline on.

Yesterday, pictures of the sofas went viral as Zimbabweans reacted angrily to images of the sofas being ferried to provide comfort to the septuagenarian amid a disaster that claimed almost 140 people.

Authorities  said that the team surrounding the president were not focused on optics, saying he wanted to be very cautious about making sure that any activity does not disrupt any of the recovery efforts.

Government's spokesperson Nick Mangwana said people should not waste time talking about luxuries such as sofas when the country is in mourning.

He slammed "people who want to talk about sofas in the midst of a national crisis of this magnitude" whom he said "should hang their heads in shame for being petty."




"Should we be talking of sofas when so many of our fellow citizens are missing? Should we be preoccupied with why there is a picture of people carrying a sofa when whole families have been wiped out by this catastrophe?

"The seating arrangement of people including that of the president is such a banal distraction in the context of this grand tragedy. There are so many angles of conversation but that one is not one of them," fumed Mangwana.

Sources in Manicaland Province told the Daily News that "overzealous" ruling party officials in the region acted on impulse to organise the sofas in an unsanctioned move that was meant to curry favour with Mnangagwa, "even though it was not appropriate".

Government has been leading from the front the rescue operations. Soldiers and specialised police sub aqua units are leading the search operations as fears grow that the number of victims could rise.

At least 139 people have so far been recorded dead since the storm hit the country, with the death toll expected to rise as rescue and recovery efforts continued.

The devastating cyclone swept away schools, bridges and homes in low lying areas in Manicaland.

This followed a week of heavy rains and flooding across south-east Africa that has also killed hundreds of people in neighbouring Malawi and Mozambique. At least one million people have been affected in the region in what is regarded as one of the worst natural disasters to hit sub-Saharan Africa.

Mnangagwa Sofas PR

Source: dailynews

Comments

Latest News

ZANU PF suspends Obert Mpofu

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 1 Views

Massive demonstrations against Mthuli Ncube planned

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 8 Views

ZESA plunges Lobengula into darkness for 2 months

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 2 Views

ED full speech at AU - UN summit in Vic Falls

by President ED Mnangagwa | 24 June 2019 | 15 Views

Evidence that Shonas arrived in Zimbabwe 300 years ago (1700's) - Dr. ...

by Ndzimu-unami Emmanuel Moyo, PMP | 24 June 2019 | 31 Views

Chiwenga and Mnangagwa's fight reaches boiling point

by Itai Mushekwe | 24 June 2019 | 25 Views

Jonathan Moyo says Mthuli Ncube must be stripped off degree

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 9 Views

Zimbabwe bans use of US Dollar and Rand

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 33 Views

Mnangagwa poisoning; new details emerge

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 20 Views

Mthuli Ncube speaks of Zim dollar imminence

by Staff Reporter | 24 June 2019 | 25 Views

Zim Dollar back? - The following statement is trading online today. Is...

by Staff Reporter | 24 June 2019 | 24 Views

Mthuli Ncube engages journalists

by Staff Reporter | 24 June 2019 | 6 Views

Chamisa condemns Ethiopia coup attempts

by Staff Reporter | 24 June 2019 | 7 Views

Police arrest Harare drug syndicate

by Mandla Ndlovu | 24 June 2019 | 3 Views

Cop molests boss - A BULAWAYO-based traffic cop indecently assaulted h...

by Staff reporter | 24 June 2019 | 11 Views

Top cops, ZPCS, doctors face jail - Heads of hospitals, police station...

by Staff reporter | 24 June 2019 | 12 Views

Mthuli Ncube interacts with journalists

by Staff reporter | 24 June 2019 | 1 Views

Entertainment

Zimbabwean rapper teams up with top selling American singer

by Staff Reporter | 17 June 2019 | 728 Views

WATCH: Penny Penny song insults Malema

by Mandla Ndlovu | 14 June 2019 | 9671 Views

Mixed feelings over Harare artistes at Econet gig - Econet Wireless' Z...

by Staff reporter | 11 June 2019 | 942 Views

Low turnout at Sulu's birthday bash

by Simbarashe Sithole | 08 June 2019 | 2210 Views

Ivy Kombo drops 14th album - CELEBRATED United Kingdom-based Zimbabwea...

by Staff reporter | 06 June 2019 | 405 Views

The latest slots online in 2019

by Staff writer | 05 June 2019 | 817 Views

Gospel music taken to another level

by Leonard Koni | 28 May 2019 | 325 Views

Thomas Mapfumo, Winky D to headline Zimfest Live in August

by Tidi Kwidini | 28 May 2019 | 1417 Views
iBlog

Samsung Gear Vr Innovator Edition For S6: The Perfect Vr Intro For Professionals

we're drenched in talk about the impending wave of consumer-facing vr headsets about to hit the market, starting at the end of 2015. by contrast, you can walk into a best buy right now and pick up the samsung gear vr innovator edition for the galax... Read More
Sergey 20 June 2015 ago

Ios 9 Features Inspired By Android

apple announced ios 9 on monday, and while watching the keynote, i had just a little bit of déjà vu. most of ios 9's new features seem to be squarely aimed at apple's biggest rival in mobile: android. specifically, they were about catching up to ... Read More
Sergey 13 June 2015 ago