ZIMBABWE has officially asked Kenya to expel a Mugabe-era Cabinet Minister amid claims that that he is organising mass protests against the southern African country’s government.
Prosecutors have approached Kenya seeking the extradition of Jonathan Moyo, who fled during the 2017 coup that saw Robert Mugabe toppled from power and Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa installed as Zimbabwe’s president.
Prof Moyo, a former Higher Education Minister, was charged with fraud involving over $400,000 in public funds, but he argues that the case is politically motivated. Mr Moyo is believed to have been the brains behind G40, which was a faction within the ruling Zanu-PF party that was scheming to propel Grace Mugabe to take over power from her husband, at the expense of then VP Mnangagwa.
Now, a top Zanu PF party official has said that Zimbabwe wants Mr Moyo expelled to stop him from mobilising against President Mnangagwa’s government.
“We take note and welcome the prosecutor general’s efforts for the extradition of Professor Jonathan Moyo from Kenya as he is the figment of the external demonisation of our leadership and extorting mass uprising in the country,” said Zanu PF secretary for administration Obert Mpofu.
However, Zimbabwe and Kenya do not have an extradition treaty, but Harare says there is a provision for the two countries to facilitate the politician’s return to face criminal charges. Mr Moyo claims that there has been an assassination attempt against him even after he fled to Kenya.
However, government spokesperson Ndabaningi Mangwana said President Mnangagwa had no intentions to kill the former minister.
“Zimbabwe does not assassinate people,” he said.
“We have a lot of faith in our criminal justice system and we believe everyone should have their day in court, (Prof) Jonathan Moyo included,” he added.The former minister has a controversial past, both in his home country and Kenya.
In Kenya, Mr Moyo once worked for an international NGO in Nairobi in the 1990s which he was accused of defrauding of thousands of dollars. He was implicated in a corruption scandal involving about $6 million (about Sh620 million) while he was the programme director in Nairobi for the US-based charity organisation, Ford Foundation.
The money was meant for a Nairobi-based NGO, the Series on Alternative Research in East Africa Trust, which was founded by political scientist Mutahi Ngunyi.
Kenyan officials have previously denied habouring Mr Moyo.