Image Credit: SouthernEye
January 13, 1965
|Known for||Former Minister of Sports Arts and Culture|
|Political party||Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front|
Andrew Langa is a Zimbabwean politician who is the current Member of Parliament (MP) for Insiza North. Until September 2015, he was the Minister of Sports Arts and Culture in the Zimbabwean Government.
In January 2018, he was arrested by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission on corruption charge allegedy committed during the 2014 African Union Youth Games held in Bulawayo.
Andrew Langa was born on January 13, 1965.
It is reported that Langa began to work for Zanu-PF since 1985. He was once a Deputy Minister of Tourism and he also served as a Deputy Minister of Public Service, Labour, and Social Welfare during the era of the Government of National Unity (GNU). He contested during the July 2013 elections representing Zanu-PF and he was elected to be the MP for Insiza North.
As Minister of Sports and Culture
In September 2013, he was appointed by Robert Mugabe to become the Minister of Sport, Arts, and Culture, after Mugabe created this stand-alone ministry. Since 1980, sport had been an appendage in the then Ministry of Education. Various organisations and sports-persons had long been arguing that sport was being sidelined as a result of being submerged within the Ministry of Education. As a result of this, there was a lot of individual effort as the government seemed not to support the endeavors by those in the sporting arena.
When he was sworn in as the Minister of Sport, Arts, and Culture, Langa set off by launching the Mashonaland Central Province Sports and Recreation Trust in Bindura in March 2014. This came up about as a response to the challenges and opportunities which according to Langa were inherent in grass-roots sports development, national games as well as the hosting of provincial and national events.
In line with his policy of revitalizing and reforming the sports section, in June 2014, Langa dissolved the Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) board. This board had been appointed by David Coltart who was the then Minister of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture during the tenure of the GNU. Langa argued that he was not impressed with the conduct and commitment of the SRC board when only one board member, Jessie Nyakataura turned up for what Langa described as a crucial meeting which he had called for.
In December 2014, Langa’s ministry organized the hosting of the African Union Sports Council Region Five Under 20 Youth Games.
Langa was said to have led a group of Zanu-PF supporters who threatened an MDC activist identified as Sitshengisiwe Ndlovu in 2010 in Insiza North after he had enquired from the Constitution Select Committee (COPAC) team if people were to be safe after making their contributions. Ndlovu was forced to relocate to Filabusi fearing to be victimised.
In 2013, Langa was implicated in the kidnapping and subsequent death of Oziah Mathuthu, who was also a former MDC T Filabusi Ward 11 Councillor. Langa was also accused of being notorious working in cohorts with his killer squad against ‘dissidents’. Langa, however, dispelled that he was behind the kidnapping and death of Mathuthu arguing that he was actually related to Mathuthu.
In February 2014, Langa together with Naison Kutshwekhaya Ndlovu (a former Deputy President of the Senate of the 7th parliament) was embroiled in a mine wrangle scandal. It was reported that, the two evicted a couple (Nqobile Khumalo and Francisca Mufambi) from their Filabusi mine after an Israel national used a fraudulent order from the Bulawayo Court to wrest the mine from the couple, giving part of the mine to Trianic Mining and Milling Company as well as to Langa and Ndlovu. The evicted couple was not contended with how the matter was handled and they appealed to the High Court of Zimbabwe. On 19 January 2015, it was reported that the court ruled in favor of the couple as it emerged that the court order used by Langa and his accomplice to elbow out the Filabusi couple was not an original court order. The court also figured out that, the evicted couple had an agreement with the Israeli national who later ditched the couple in favour of Langa. The court dismissed Langa and his Israeli partners from having anything to do with the mine.
Calls for Langa’s ouster began to surface in the second quarter of 2014. Politburo members and Central Committee members from Matabeleland South Province were calling for the dismissal of Langa. Simon Khaya Moyo intervened to protect Langa telling those calling for his ouster to back off.
Regardless of this, Langa was booted out of the ZANU PF structures after he was found guilty of fanning factionalism, for being aligned to the Joice Mujuru faction which was reportedly orchestrating a coup to oust Mugabe as well as undermining the First Lady, Grace Mugabe. A vote of no confidence was passed on him on 10 November 2014 sealing his fate.
The motion to boot Langa was discussed in Gwanda when the Provincial Congress Coordinating Committee for Matabeleland, which was led by Abigail Damasane was deliberating about the party’s 6th Congress which was held in December 2014. The issue was brought forth when Langa’s relatives, friends, and supporters attacked a man identified as Cde Muridzo Muchineripi for carrying placards denouncing Langa. Damasane, however, blocked the move to discuss Langa’s purge on the basis that the meeting was meant to address issues concerning the party’s 6th Congress.
A second meeting was convened by war veterans who unanimously passed a vote of no confidence on Langa. Those who attended the meeting claimed that
The chairman (Langa) indulged in unprocedural activities before and during the provincial and national elective conferences for the Youths and Women’s Conferences. This he did through systematic intimidation and vote to buy for a faction.
Langa was also accused of attempting to sabotage Grace’s ‘Meet the People’ rallies programme which she undertook after her entry into mainstream politics. It was stated that Langa deliberately attempted to change the venue for Grace’s rally from Gwanda to Fibalusi despite the fact that he knew that the rallies were to be held at provincial centers. Langa was found guilty of organising a counter-rally in Maphisa on the day Grace was supposed to hold her own ‘Meet the People’ rally at Pelandaba Stadium as well as bussing youths from his constituency to disrupt Grace’s rally amongst other ‘crimes’.
In spite of this, Langa called his ouster as the joke of the year. He described it as meaningless on the basis that the list of signatures supporting his alleged ouster were obtained by means that are irregular, not procedural, nonsensical and defamatory.
Langa pledged to give 13 cows as present to Bona Mugabe and Simba Chikore when the two tied the knot on the 1st of March in 2014. He argued that, Matebeleland South won the 13 seats after the July 2013 elections; hence the province was to give away 13 cows. It later resurfaced that Langa was forcing those who won to donate their own beasts. It was reported that Langa was stating that as the provincial chairman for Matebeleland South, he had supported the candidature of those who won and hence he was threatening to sabotage their future bids if they failed to comply. Simon Khaya Moyo intervened to quell this discontent.
- Andrew Langa fires back, Southern Eye, published:12 Nov 2014, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Andrew Langa, Kuvaka Zim, published:2013,retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Separate sports ministry commendable, NewsDay, published:14 Sep 2014, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Langa to launch Mash Central Sports Trust, NewsDay, published:27 Mar 2014, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Wellington Toni, Off you go, Langa tells SRC board, NewsDay, published:20 Jun 2014, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- BREAKING NEWS: Langa fired, Hlongwane takes reins, Herald, Published: 17 Sep 2015, Retrieved: 17 Sep 2015
- Zanu PF MP threatens to kill MDC activist, Nehanda Radio, published:30 Jul 2010,retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Makhosi Sibanda, Murder accusations rile Andrew Langa, Radio Dialogue, published:10 Dec 2013, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Phillip Chidavaenzi, Zanu PF bigwigs in mine scandal, Southern Eye, published:13 Feb 2014, retrieved:5 Januaty 2015"
- Auxilia Katongomara, Minister in gold mine ownership wrangle, Nehanda Radio, published:19 Jan 2015,retrieved:19 January 2015"
- Benson Ncube, Zanu PF dirty wars, Southern Eye, published:21 May 2014,retrieved:5January 2015"
- Nduduzo Tshuma and Marvelous Moyo, Andrew Langa kicked out, The Chronicle, published:11 Nov 2014, retrieved:5 January 2015"
- Nduduzo Tshuma, Bona wedding present glitch, Southern Eye, published:8 Apr 2014,retrieved:5 January 2015"