Acie Lumumba is finding support after his sex tape release, with many rallying to the support of the former Zimbabwe Youth Council leader who is being seen as the victim of a politically motivated attack.
Lumumba was splashed across tabloids this week with the release of some censored images from his alleged sex tape. He claimed that the video was stolen during an illegal police search and released as retribution for his falling out with the council, which included allegations that he inappropriately filtered funds to his own business.
Acie Lumumba did not try to deny that the sex tape showed him, but instead said it is of no interest to the public.
“Today it was announced by H-Metro that video recordings of private nature will soon be released to the public. The recordings are of me having sex,” he told Zimbabwe News. “I am sure that curiosity and prurient interest will cause some people to watch these recordings. This cannot be helped.”
Lumumba had recently been fired as chairman of the Zimbabwe Youth Empowerment Strategy for Investment’s steering committee, with allegations that had misused funds, the Herald reported. Lumumba was accused of taking money meant for a youth conference and instead giving it to his own company, Cornerstone Consulting.
The political conflict brought Acie Lumumba into a battle with his former ally, Patrick Zhuwao, who served as minister of Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment. Zhuwao announced that he was the one who ultimately fired Lumumba from his position.
“My decision is based on an apparent conflict of interest between the duties entrusted on him as the chairperson of the Steering Committee and representative of young people on one hand, and his personal interest in a company called Cornerstone Consulting on the other hand,” Zhuwao said.
Lumumba responded with allegations that Zhuwao fired him after the two came into conflict and told The Independent that it was actually Zhuwao leading the corrupt council.
Lumumba had become a vocal critic of Zimbabwe’s political establishment, using social media to speak out about cash shortages and hunger that has swept through rural areas, New Zimbabwe reported.
Acie Lumumba said the release of his sex tape is meant to distract from these issues.
“Those who think that a disclosure of my naked body will distract the people of Zimbabwe from their every day troubles are due for a rude awakening,” he said (via New Zimbabwe). “Today people will discuss my sex life, but tomorrow they will again discuss the fact that they have no money, no electricity, no food and no hope.”
Lumumba is starting to gain many allies. Maynard Manyowa of Nehanda Radio wrote that even though he disagrees with Lumumba politically, he decried the efforts to silence him.
“For all my dislike for Lumumba, it is undeniable that this ‘episode’ is meant to discredit Lumumba’s activism in the eyes of the purists mentioned prior. However, they over indulge when they slam the journalists that reported the matter and paint Lumumba as a total victim.”
“It is disheartening, to see how Zimbabweans can be taken for such an easy and cheap ride.”
Others are in Lumumba’s corner, including former Sunday Mail editor Brezhnev Malaba who tweeted, “If you send your goons to search my house without a search warrant, & u ‘leak’ my intimate pictures, that’s not journalism. Disgusting.”
For all the attention it has garnered, Acie Lumumba said the sex tape release will not bully him into silence.
[Image via Instagram/Acie Lumumba]