Grace for president?

HARARE - President Robert Mugabe’s wife Grace on Wednesday received a major boost as chiefs and government ministers gave her a “blank cheque for higher office” in Zanu PF.

With her position as the Women’s League national secretary all but secured, there is no doubt that the flamboyant businesswoman is being primed for bigger things through flattery and rising sycophantism at her meetings.

Zanu PF is presently torn between two battling factions, one reportedly led by Vice President Joice Mujuru and the other by Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Prospects of a third force have, however, been bandied about, with party officials jostling to give the first lady a ringing endorsement in a bid to curry favour with her husband.

On Tuesday, chiefs, their spouses and ministers, demonstrated that they were ready to give Grace all the power she wants.

With her election to head the Women’s League virtually assured at a party congress in December, she will take a seat in Zanu PF’s politburo. 

Amid speculation that Grace is planning countrywide “thank you” rallies, there are also suggestions that she will use the indabas to galvanise support for a higher position in the party.

Speaking at her Mazowe farm on Tuesday, Grace said she was ready to be the “monya (bouncer) for hire”.

Chiefs lined up to back her, with some literally grovelling and likening Mugabe’s wife to the country’s venerated spirit medium Mbuya Nehanda. Born Nehanda Charwe Nyakasikana, the famed svikiro (spirit medium)  which provided inspiration against white settlers in pre-independent Zimbabwe.

Martin Dinha, the Mashonaland Central governor and State Minister, said as a province, they were ready to be defend Grace’s elevation.

“We are more blessed than all of you,” Dinha said. “In this province, we saw it fit that she (Grace) should stay in Mbuya Nehanda’s territory. This is a sacred land that is managed by Mai Mugabe.”

Dinha said the first lady, a former typist,   was “an intelligent person who deserves to lead the country.”

Just as the chiefs’ appearance at her Mazowe orphanage was a huge surprise, so much has been the flattery that the first lady’s manoeuvres to grab adjacent properties to build the sprawling facility were said to be part of her efforts to support Zanu PF’s economic blueprint ZimAsset.

“I was one of the few people who believed that her projects would not materialise up,” Dinha said. “This is one project that came true. She (Grace) started ZimAsset before we even knew we would have it.”

Referring to the first lady as a “loving mother”, the fawning governor said he was ready to fight for her ascendancy.

“Mother, do not be scared, the country is fully behind you, even if we are insulted or beaten hatikendenge (we do not care). No doubt, amai, tinomira nemi (we will stand by you).”

Dinha added: “December achisvika pindai pamunoda (Come December, get into any position of your choice).”

Grace’s entrance into the Zanu PF political arena has ruffled feathers in the ruling party.

Her backers are now called  “Mazoe Crush”, and the name specifically refers to her “queen makers”  Oppah Muchinguri and Edna Madzongwe, the two party officials who proposed her for the Women’s League top job.

Dinha said: “Ichi chitima cherusununguko. Ukaregera kujambira unosara (This is a freedom train, if you do not join the bandwagon, you will be left behind).”

Chiefs and their spouses, who came to Harare ostensibly for a meeting with minister Ignatius Chombo and were later taken to the first lady’s farm, were en-route to Gweru where they are currently attending a meeting.

They were taken around the first family’s ever-expanding empire and treated to the best cuisine. They were impressed.

Chief Musarurwa summed up the feeling among the traditional leaders, who were donning their red gowns lined with purple, the royal colour.

“Ndimi maita nyakasikana muchengeti wevanhu. Isu tinoti tongai, anonyunyuta  ngaanyunyute. Muri amai vedu chete kusvika narinhi. (Thank you, you have become Nehanda, the one who takes care of the people. As chiefs, we say you should rule and those who are against you can complain all they want but you are our mother forever).”

Critics say Mugabe, by backing his wife’s entry into politics, is subtly creating a monarch. But president of the Chiefs’ Council Fortune Charumbira said even in popular churches, it was now common cause that the church could be led by the prophetess when the prophet is not around.

“Hatred will be there,” Charumbira said. “If you are not challenged during your rise, that is not healthy.”

Joel Biggie Matiza, the deputy Local Government minister, said Grace’s business empire was a clear indication that she was ready for the big role.

“Mhepo inonaka iyi, maoko emunhu mumwe chete. Hauite zvinhu izvi zvichirotwa, haasi ma building chete asi pane mamwe ma programme ekuti ukamatarisa, vamwe munobuda misodzi (We are breathing fresh air because of one person. She does not have the orphanage but other programmes which can evoke tears).

“She has leadership qualities,” Matiza said.

Comments (31)

There is a saying that you can tell the backwardness of a country (Third World countries that is) by the way the people revere their leader(s) for no apparent reason.

Musona - 11 September 2014

Heheehe..anyone willing to stand and compete plz do our First Lady has already started those interested show us what you have that is better than what those of who have had a chance to see her works say?Even in bzness if u looking for finance those financing want to c what u have done first on your own..I hear pple where touting Mai Mujuru can she also show us what she has been doing we heard her husband left billions worth as inheritance so we can measure capability..

Pambili Grace - 11 September 2014

Please Cdes in Zanu PF can you work on the 'dying' economy before you discuss the succession issue which has been on the card since 2000. What can Amai do if she becomes president in 2018? Why was she not advising VaNgushungo over the past decades to turn around the economy? I have personally enjoy the former amai (Sally)

martin chipimo - 11 September 2014

So Dinha has decided to take fawning and sycophancy to the highest level in Zimbabwe? There is no leadership in Zimbabwe; the country has been on a free fall since 1980. When Grace becomes President, Cde Chinotimba will be Vice President. What about that!

Nkosi Mambo - 11 September 2014

We used to say our country has gone to the dogs, but now we can say even the dogs won't have it. How can ZPF try to make Zimbabweans Grace's people? This is disastrous for our country, the economy, our national reputation and dignity. Why don't we just return and resort to normal politics, not this shallow sycophancy, flattery and praise-singing?

Chenjerai Hove - 11 September 2014

The biggest problem is that we the populace are being punished for according Mugabe God status. In the eighties, women would lay their zambias, emblazoned with RGM's face so he could walk over, talk of real supreme opulence. But, God my Lord, is a very merciful being, who shall deliver us from this evil, despite our unforgivable commission of a sin as unholy as to accord his status to a mere mortal. We have done all we can, but just can not dislodge the oppressor, a very clear indication of our limited ability and we have those enjoying the good life committing flattery so as to prolong the patronage system. But, behold, for I see the entrance of this lady into main stream Zanu politics and especially so the higher one she is being pushed to occupy as a harbinger for disaster and a blessing in disguise for the nation. There are those in the liberation party, who are starting to feel threatened and may not just be wished away, who are not just going to stand by while food is being whisked from their mouths. That shall be the day when implosion blast the ruining party into oblivion. God, unlike men, performs miracles in the least of expected circumstance, just watch the ides of December.

badass - 11 September 2014

It is better for Grace to be a sangoma like Nehanda not president of his country that would be a big insult to us . Anywhere that can only happen over the dead bodies of zimbabweans besides that Grace will never rule us never , never.never ever .

Diibulaanyika - 11 September 2014

Regai varumbudzane vapengo voga ndinoti vokwedu Midlands , Masvingo nevavakidzani vedu Matebeleland tisabatwa kumeso zvirinani kuisa mai Mahofa than Gire . Masvingo marega Charumbira achitengesa seiko nhai dai baba ZVOBGO varipo hataiona madhakanana akadai . Baba Ngwena Mnangagwa ngatiregei kurega musangano uchitwa kunge ndewekwaMugabe handifungi mudzimu waCde Tongogara , Cde Chapungu(Mberengwa) vachihwa zvakadai vangafara kuti ZANU YOITWA YEKWAMUGABE

MukarangawekuMberengwa - 11 September 2014

The elevation of idiots that has destroyed our beloved country. No lessons seem to be learnt by ZANU PF and its bunch of bootlickers.

Ziziharinanyanga - 11 September 2014

Instead of fueling Grace Mugabe's celebrity status, perhaps this newspaper should highlight why this entitled 'b.tch' is unqualified to lead Zimbabwe.

david taylor - 11 September 2014

Fungi Kwaramba please don't give us this nonsense about the “country's venerated spirit medium Mbuya Nehanda. Born Nehanda Charwe Nyakasikana, the famed svikiro (spirit medium) which provided inspiration against white settlers in pre-independent Zimbabwe” - for starters the person you are calling Mbuya Nehanda was just a young woman, not Mbuya, in her early 20s when she was executed by the whites. I have a picture of both Nyanda, whom most people call Nehanda, and Kagubi whom most people call Kaguvi. I will go by the whites' spelling of names because they are the ones who taught locals how to spell. The Kagubi guy was also very young. At the time BLACK PEOPLE HAD NO SURNAMES. Surnames and first names were introduced by the whites for positive identification purposes of each nuclear family unit. When you say pre-independence Zimbabwe you are writing as if there was a Zimbabwe before colonialism. That is anachronistic. Before the whites came there was no nation-state. The locals lived in thinly populated cluster villages. The Karanga tribes lived separately from the Manyika, separately from the Korekore, separately from the Zezuru, separately from the Rozvi etc etc. These tribes did not know each other until the whites came and cooped up the tribes and formed big common Reserves. Around 1980 politicians in Zanu wanted to name Masvingo, Nyanda, because some knew of Nyanda not Nehanda but for some reason the name Nyanda was dropped and they settled for Masvingo. Were it not for the whites we could still be living like he backward tribes in Brazil which we saw during the World Cup. These tribes on the Amazon, Brazil, live in their village clusters and are oblivious of the nation-state with their bows and arrows and woman bare breasted.

Musona - 11 September 2014

One sentence should read, "These tribes on the Amazon, Brazil, live in their village clusters and are oblivious of the nation-state with their bows and arrows and women bare breasted".

Musona - 11 September 2014

musona murungu. varungu vakakukuvadza musoro. this guy was completely colonised. for him nothing good comes out of a black person. pls pay no attention to him. he is a sad story.

taurai - 12 September 2014

don,t just correct one sentence my friend. the whole corpus of your writing should read something else not this 'whiteman's propaganda'.

taurai - 12 September 2014

Honestly there are no greater heights of stupidity in Zanu PF than this demonstrates. To be queuing and lauding Grace (former secretary turned husband snatcher) to be the next President of Zimbabwe is not only an insult to all Zimbabweans but a solid demonstration of how docile we have become as a nation. When those two surreal former Chimbwidos first proposed that she took over the Women's League she played her usual shenanigans pretending as if she was reluctant only to spring up the next day like a Rapist's manhood and declare she was ready to 'fight'! Grace being our President...... NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS!!!

Takakora - 12 September 2014

Whatever the case,Grace can never be president in Zimbabwe. Inga masvikiro anonzi akati nyika haingatongwi nemukadzi.Ko Grace avemurume here?This is a real circus.

ngoni - 12 September 2014

God appoints leaders and when his appointed time comes no man can say a word even the hard hearted, Pharoh never thot he would let the Israites go and yet the spirit of God made him release them so shall it be our portion, A leader will emerge. The Bible says man plan but God laughs. Ichati yakwana nguva yaMwari

critic - 12 September 2014

zim politics dzinosemesa. all of a sudden mai mugabe mai mugabe... all the zupco buses now have her face? dhiri riripo there are guys i.e chombo,shamhu and other juntas who have been mugabes bootlickers know very well that once mugabe dies or out of power they are goin to sink. hence they are the people who are financing all this b.s of mai mugabe. Ask yoselves why all of a sudden... dont vote for pliz thiz guys dont hve our interests at heart...kana tambo m*m* na mugabe mbune wat mo this flamboyant lady???

gazaman_kartel - 12 September 2014

We are getting a taste of our own medicine bhora mugedhi!!!

protestor - 12 September 2014

imboitai zvemahumbwe henyu, ichati yotanga tsoro dzayo ngwena. ana dinha muchamhanya rega uone. midlands, masvingo, matebeleland (north and south), manicaland and bulawayo hope we are pulling in the same direction.

haya - 12 September 2014

imboitai zvemahumbwe henyu, ichati yotanga tsoro dzayo ngwena. ana dinha muchamhanya rega uone. midlands, masvingo, matebeleland (north and south), manicaland and bulawayo hope we are pulling in the same direction.

haya - 12 September 2014

Grace Mugabe has already started on a very bad footing by lying through her teeth to the whole nation and all who care to listen that she is poor. What kind of a leader lies like that, what more when she becomes President and a proper politician?Will we ever believe anything that comes out of her mouth?Will anyone? A president who chooses to turn productive land into an orphanage and wild life sanctuary. Even those that are campaigning for her know in their minds that they are only doing so to fulfill their own selfish ends.

Dr Know - 12 September 2014

Who said Grace will be president? If Zanu pf wants her as the party's president, there is nothing wrong with that. But all adults in Zimbabwe are the ones who will decide who their next President will be. If they choose her, or Tsvangirai or Mukwazhi or Welshman or Dumiso or anyone else, then let it be so. I personally don't see any problem here.

machakachaka - 12 September 2014

Oh Dinha, please stop this arse licking

Observer - 12 September 2014

Mwari pindirai munyika musava nehondo nekuda kwevanhu vasingadi hutungamiriri hwechikadzi. Even ladies can lead this country, they also have what it takes to be leaders and they have brains too!

RADSON ZULU - 12 September 2014

"Zimbabwe unfinished journey" where are we going and where are we coming from? Is this going to improve the economy?

ZIZOU - 16 September 2014

This big old drum called zanupf is about to tear, its now sounding so loud. I ve always said our freedom will come when Zanupf implodes, not from outside but right from the core. It will rip apart so badly, the pieces will be like shrapnels from a bomb. Aluta Continua...Freedom is coming madoda

George - 16 September 2014

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GALLERYCARTRIDGES - 17 September 2014

This is just madness, indeed Zanu Pf is not serious.....its just a circus.

peacewell - 17 September 2014

Chief Charumbira and your team, may you explain to zimbabweans why you are calling the first lady mbuya nehanda?

think - 19 September 2014


shadreck maduke - 19 September 2017

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