Mnangagwa bread-on-armrest picture causes internet sensation
By Staff reporter | 15 May 2019 at 15:32hrs
A bizarre picture of President Emmerson Mnangagwa sitting in the back of an SUV with exposed bread slices on the armrest caused an internet stir on Tuesday.
Mnangagwa, who appears to be focused on something, possibly a phone, is seen sitting with a man, later identified as Gweru bakery owner Douglas Kwande.
Kwande is dressed in a red track bottom and grey shirt. The two men's elbows pivot from an armrest, with Kwande's in contact with what looks like five bread slices.
Through the window, soldiers in an open top truck follow behind Mnangagwa's vehicle.
Zimbabweans on social media, having concluded that both vehicles were moving, wondered why Mnangagwa and his passenger were not putting on any seatbelts.
"The bread is not covered, no seat belts. So much disorder," said one Twitter user.
Some speculated that Mnangagwa was eating the bread.
As speculation swelled about what was depicted in the image, Mnangagwa's Twitter account attempted to put context.
The account tweeted another picture of Mnangagwa with Kwande, standing in front of a body of water and seemingly getting ready to eat some bread.
The accompanying tweet said: "Good to meet Mr Kwande and hear how he has baked 5,000 loaves of bread to supply the Gweru market, using only Zimbabwean wheat. I am always happy to meet local entrepreneurs and learn about their initiatives to build our economy."
But as Zimbabweans quickly noted, both men are wearing different clothing on the two images - suggesting they have met at least more than once.
Zimbabweans will continue to wonder though about the bread slices on the armrest, who took the image, who leaked it and about the failure to secure the president with a seat belt.
The government, desperate to find a solution to foreign currency-draining wheat imports, invited Kwande to make a presentation to Cabinet in February about how he is making bread with locally-produced wheat without mixing with imported ingredients like other bakers.
Kwande's Brainman Investments was hailed by ministers as a model to replicate across the country to make bread affordable again after the prices nearly doubled to RTGS$3.50 last month.