Baba Jukwa, the Facebook vigilante assumed the role of a mole within President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF party, purporting to be fighting for the truth. The Facebook page amassed hundreds of thousands of followers among Zimbabweans and was even more popular towards the July 31, 2013 elections. On the page, Jukwa has described himself as a “concerned father, fighting nepotism and directly linking community with their leaders, government, MPs and ministers.”With almost half a million followers, it is the most popular page in Zimbabwe.
On Satuuray, NewZimbabwe.com broke the story and published email communications, pictures and a YouTube video showing how unknown hackers broke into the pair’s emails and unmasked Mxolisi Ncube and Mkhululi Chimoio, two journalists based in South Africa, as the characters that have been running the page.
“We got them because they were stupid enough to put their real mobile phone numbers and genuine email accounts as back-up. They were clumsy,” said the hackers.
While Chimoio has refused to make any comments saying all correspondences need to be done through his lawyer, Ncube has denied the allegations publicly. He has announced that they will be suing the news website amid the allegations.
Ncube has told Zimbabwe’s NewsDay newspaper that he has been wrongly fingered as running the Facebook account because he had previously been in contact with Baba Jukwa.
In a joint statement Ncube and Chimoio stated;
“We would hereby like to notify that we have, with immediate effect, handed over the case to our lawyer, Obert Gutu of Gutu and Chikowero Attorneys-at-Law, who shall institute legal action on behalf of the two journalists.”
Meanwhile, Information Minister Jonathan Moyo has taken a cautious approach to this situation saying he would not take the alleged involvement of CIO agents at face value, insisting the internet hacking was rampant. Moyo said he was relieved the unmasking of the real characters behind the scandal was not the work of any disgruntled Zanu PF politburo member contrary wide belief this was an inside job.
“While the claim that the anonymous hackers who have unmasked Baba Jukwa worked with unnamed intelligence services should be taken with some grain of salt given that Internet hacking has become an art form even among high school kids, it should be said that there is no unknown on the Internet. Surfing the Internet is no different from driving on any highway,” Moyo said in a statement.
“There’s no permanent privacy or secrecy there about your car or anything inside it not least because you can be stopped and your car can be searched. Everything on the Internet is either known or can be known sooner or later.
With almost half a million followers, Baba Jukwa is the most popular in Zimbabwe. On the page, Jukwa has described himself as a “concerned father, fighting nepotism and directly linking community with their leaders, government, MPs and ministers.”