A woman from Mpofu village in Lupane, Matabeleland North Province, who was expelled from an irrigation scheme for her links with the opposition CCC party, was later reinstated after the intervention of human rights lawyers.

The woman, Patricia Moyo (42) was expelled from the Bubi-Lupane irrigation scheme after her husband, Thulani Mlotshwa, filed his nomination papers to be the CCC candidate for Ward 18 in the 23 August Harmonised Elections.

Mlotshwa is now a councillor after winning the seat in the elections.

The irrigation’s chairperson Gerald Khumalo wrote a letter to Moyo notifying her of the decision to expel her.

The letter stated that Khumalo received a directive from ZANU PF to inform Moyo that she was no longer part of the scheme.

Speaking to CITE’s Senzeni Ncube, Moyo said she sought legal advice from the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR). She said:

"I looked for Human Rights lawyers, and there are some people who work with them here in this area, they gave me their contacts and I called them.

They had to come here, and I told them what transpired. They had to also go to the irrigation and talk with the chairman."

Moyo said after being approached by the ZLHR, Khumalo denied having written the dismissal letter.

Moyo said after engagements with the irrigation leadership, ZLHR advised her to resume work. She said:

"They told me to go back to the irrigation, but when I went back, there were still accusations that I was tarnishing the irrigation’s name.

I had to call the lawyers again and they had to come and engage the leadership."

Moyo said the experience has left her shaken considering that Khumalo flatly denied authoring the letter after the intervention of lawyers.