By ZBC Reporter
Globe-trotting human rights activist Hopewell Chin’ono is part of a United States-funded regime-change agenda created to bash Zimbabwe and portray it in negative light, former MDC-T member Tongai Matutu has revealed.
In an expose on micro-blogging site, Twitter Matutu narrated how Chin’ono was approached and funded by the United States embassy in Harare to use social and digital media to viciously attack the Zimbabwean government in order to create anarchy and socio-political destabilisation.
“I am not even surprised with what Chin’ono is doing; it’s not something new. I know how all this started. In 2018, pushing for regime change, the US shifted its focus on NGOs to a vicious online project dubbed digital activism,which is targeting journalists, youths and urbanites. With our help in the MDC, the US Embassy then released over US$10 million on December 26 2018 to online media houses and civil society in a campaign meant to mobilize people towards an uprising against Government,” Matutu says.
Since then, the US Embassy has been closely working round the clock with individuals like Chin’ono, Simba Chikanza and other digital activists to create political instability for the purpose of unseating the ruling ZANU PF Party from power, Matutu claims.
He says media organisations such as 263Chat, Bus Stop TV and Citizen Manifesto were funded to the tune of US$4,2 million combined. Citizen Manifesto received US$1 million; @263Chat US$1,5 million, Bus Stop TV US$1,7 million and $1,5 million was administered under the @ZimHRNGOForum.
Matutu describes a well-orchestrated plan by the US embassy working in cahoots with local media and civil rights organisations to fund anti-ZANU PF messages, with Chin’ono seemingly playing a central role.
“Part of the money was also extended to Magamba Network led by Samm Munroe aka Cde Fatso. Zenzele Ndebele of CITE was given a total of US$2 million and was tasked to train social media outlets on how to package their anti-ZANU PF Govt messages and orchestrate revolts in Zimbabwe. The Embassy then began some wide consultations with Hopewell Chin’ono who received a share of US$500 000. He was housed at the US embassy in Westgate for the whole month of December 2018. The discussion was on the role independent media and journalists play in any democracy. Nichols met with Chin’ono and Mdudhuzi mathuthu of ZimLive after the failed January 2019 protests to strategise how best digital activism can be promoted. They received a total of US$1,5 million and were tasked to demonise the Government using satire.”
Another similar project targeting Zimbabwe was also launched, the Africa Digital Rights Fund of The Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa which is being funded by George Soros, HiVOS, Ford Foundation, Global Network Initiative and the Sweden Govt. A total of USD$6 million was awarded to 10 initiatives for the purpose of advancing digital rights in 16 African countries–Algeria, Burundi, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gambia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal, South Sudan, Tanzania, Tunisia, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe, Matutu explains.
“This is how all this madness started. This is when they mastered the art of creating fake stories especially when we are approaching international and regional events. The idea is to soil the image of the government and incite civil unrest in the country. I was part of all this!”
Chin’ono has been on an anti-Zimbabwe crusade for years, with a recent appearance in Geneva where he purported to defend the human and health rights of Zimbabweans.
The activist, who parades himself as a multi-award winning journalist, has been described as the modern day Morrison Nyathi, whose insatiable appetite for wealth and women knows no bounds even if it means inviting evil sanctions that kill his innocent country, men, women and children. He also enjoys flaunting his ill-gotten wealth on social media, ironically, though claiming to fight for the poor. Zimbabwe has suffered crippling American sanctions for more than two decades after the then MDC party leaders went to bed with Americans and helped in crafting the Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Act (ZIDERA), a draconian document fit for the slave trade era, but masqueraded as a piece of legislation to help Zimbabweans.
The devilish act was signed into law by George W. Bush on 21 December 2001 and over the years, anti-Zimbabwe crusaders such as Tendai Biti, Nelson Chamisa and of late Hopewell Chin’ono, have been fighting day and night to ensure the legislation is kept in place to enable the illegal sanctions to remain, in the vain hope that people’s suffering will one day topple the democratically-elected ZANU PF Government.