Semblance of unity in Zanu PF unravels

HARARE - Some semblance of a united Zanu PF party unravelled last weekend when members fought raging battles at Davies Hall party headquarters that prompted party national chairman to declare a triumvirate had taken over party affairs until the polls scheduled for July this year.

Intra-party infighting could not have come at the most inappropriate time as this unity of purpose is at its most crucial stage ahead of highly contested primary elections in the volatile Bulawayo Province.

As Zanu PF national chairman Simon Khaya-Moyo’s arbitrary declaration of exclusive control seems quite impetuous given how his party has been battling shrinking support in Matabeleland ever since President Robert Mugabe refused to apologise for the Gukurahundi massacres of the mid-80s.

More importantly, the impromptu declaration serves as collective punishment imposed on all the other party provinces riddled with diverse problems from those emerging in Bulawayo Province as an unhealthy offshoot of succession issues following the death of Vice President John Nkomo.

His contestable decree is as encompassing as it is dictatorial in terms of control over other provinces that had nothing to do with the unpleasant fights at Davies Hall.

Some party members have described Moyo’s knee-jerk decree as a way to grant himself unfair advantage and enhance his credentials over other aspirants eyeing to succeed the late Vice President by wrestling party control from elected provincial executives.

The weekend punch-ups are a manifestation of deep-seated resentment among party members in Bulawayo Province who feel their views were ignored by a fickle executive and discontented with the way provincial leadership is foisted on them.

Members are baying for the removal of Killian Sibanda who has been in office for less than six months after he celebrated ousting Isaac Dakamela.

In the face of a revived Zapu, cyclic raptures as these pose risks that might leave Moyo’s party with a bloodied nose in the region. Moyo’s edict gives an insight into how the party’s top hierarchy assigns itself exclusive control of the party without members’ consent.

One poignant factor, notwithstanding the crisis of incompetent management within the Bulawayo party structures, is the ironic contradictions that emerge from a party which has always presented itself as a victim of violence from parties contesting it.

Zanu PF has vilified any slightest sign of ruction in other political parties through the State-controlled media and religiously portrayed itself as averse to violence.

Yet the fights at Davies Hall reflect otherwise.

Violence ought to be roundly condemned, unless of course, the nuances of intra-party violence rank more acceptable than inter-party violence even though the consequences are the same.

Finger-pointing does little to enhance our image as a peace-loving nation. - Staff writer

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