Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo who has rubbished the government’s much heralded Command Agriculture project actually benefitted from the programme, the State-controlled Sunday Mail said today.
In a series of tweets, Moyo queried the success of Command Agriculture and wondered whether the same people behind the project could spearhead the Command Economy project.
“Better listen to agro-economists on how $500m was commandeered to plant maize on just 153 102.60ha when the $500m was meant for 400 000ha!” he wrote in one tweet.
“After merchants of Command Agriculture poured $500m to plant maize on 153 102.60ha, they now want a Command Economy!” he said in another.
The Sunday Mail today said Moyo was behaving like “an MDC activist” by trashing Command Agriculture while at the same time benefiting from it.
Perhaps the minister was plagued by “pro-opposition demons”, it said.
The paper said Moyo was given inputs under the Command Agriculture project to grow maize on 140 hectares at his 205-hectare Elephant Trust Farm in Mazowe.
It said Moyo and his wife, Beatrice, collected diesel, maize seed, fertilisers and herbicides from Grain Marketing Board depots in Concession, Mazowe, Bindura and Harare.
Mashonaland Central Provincial Affairs Minister Martin Dinha confirmed that Moyo benefited from the Specialised Maize Production and Import Substitution Programme, commonly referred to as Command Agriculture, the Sunday Mail said.
“We were actually shocked by Prof Moyo’s remarks on social media attacking the Command Agriculture Programme. He is a beneficiary of the programme, and we gave him everything. He is a Cabinet minister and for him to act as an MDC activist is regrettable,” the paper quoted Dinha as saying.
“How does one sit in Cabinet with the President and after that meeting say ‘Command Agriculture is a sheer waste of time’? Why was he collecting those inputs? He should not fool the nation. He has a farm here in our province and benefited from the programme. What we are seeing now is his true character and intentions. Here, he is biting the hand that feeds him.”
Moyo has not yet responded to the Sunday Mail story even through his twitter handle.