A 23-year-old Bulawayo woman claims Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai is neglecting their three-month-old child in revelations that might put a dent on the MDC-T leader’s image.
The woman identified as Loreta Nyathi is now preparing to drag Tsvangirai to court in an effort to force him to pay maintenance for the child.
Top Bulawayo lawyer Josphat Tshuma of Webb Low & Barry confirmed on Friday that he had received an instruction to draft a maintenance letter of demand to Tsvangirai.
“We have not done the letter yet because I am attending a funeral. We hope to finalise everything by Monday,” he said.
Loreta who said she was forced to move out of home when the pregnancy was discovered by her parents.She said her father was not fully briefed about the circumstances surrounding her pregnancy and the birth of her son named Ethan.
Late yesterday when The Standard spoke to the father, he said he had not been in the picture when he earlier denied that Tsvangirai was being blamed for the pregnancy.
He however said he preferred to have the matter solved through traditional channels.
Sources close to Loreta say she was first introduced to Tsvangirai in 2009 at the Churchill Arms hotel in Bulawayo’s Hillside suburb by a mutual friend.
The two are said to have kept in touch through phone calls and text messages before they met again in February last year when Tsvangirai was on a tour to assess the food situation in Matabeleland.
They reportedly met at the Holiday Inn where they became intimate and Nyathi claims that is where she fell pregnant.
In early November Loreta says she travelled to Harare where she met Ian Makone, the permanent secretary in the office of the Prime Minister who allegedly gave her another US$2000 for her upkeep.
However when the woman reportedly went back to Makone’s office early this month for money for rent and the baby’s upkeep she was told in no uncertain terms that she was not getting any more money as they had given her a lot of money already.
The woman who for over a week had refused to speak to this journalist said she was hoping the situation would be resolved amicably.
“I thought they would want us to resolve this issue amicably but they don’t even want to communicate with me,” she said.
Makone refused to comment on Friday saying he was not Tsvangirai’s spokesperson.
Luke Tamborinyoka, the prime minister’s spokesperson said Tsvangirai would not comment on the issue.
“We are sick and tired of these stories. The PM is worried about pressing national issues like violence, the issue of civil servants salaries and the roadmap to elections,” Tamborinyoka said.
Last month, state media reported that Tsvangirai had been linked to a Bulawayo businesswoman Aquilina Pamberi leading to a breakdown in her marriage.
Pamberi’s husband Jacob Mandeya reportedly wanted to end the marriage because he was convinced his wife was seeing Tsvangirai.
The PM’s office dismissed the story saying it was part of the state media’s campaign to vilify Tsvangirai. The MDC-T leader is a widower after his wife died in March 2009 in a road accident.
This article first appeared in the Standard newspaper!