It's sink or swim for VP

HARARE - This week could prove to be one of the most important and significant periods in the long political life of embattled Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, as the post-congress Zanu PF war to succeed President Robert Mugabe gets hotter and nastier by the day.

Team Lacoste, as Mnangagwa’s camp is now referred to by his supporters in the warring ruling party, suffered two devastating blows at the weekend.

First, the party’s women’s league in Mashonaland West openly demanded the return of a women’s quota system in Zanu PF — a clear indication that they want First Lady Grace Mugabe to take over from Mnangagwa as party vice president as soon as possible.

Secondly, the Midlands godfather’s bitter rivals, known as the Generation 40 (G40), swept the board in the party’s key Harare district elections — which means reduced influence in the former liberation movement’s citadel of power.

Grace has reportedly lined up marathon rallies from tomorrow up to Saturday where the G40 expects that she will take aim at Team Lacoste, as the succession wars in Zanu PF continue to escalate.

In the wake of last weekend’s stunning developments, and as votes of no confidence against perceived Mnangagwa allies are piling up at provincial, district and ward levels, Grace is expected to address tense rallies in Mbare tomorrow, Mberengwa on Friday and Murewa on Saturday.

While the Murewa rally has been virtually confirmed, frantic efforts were being made last night to ensure that the first lady addresses rallies at Chishawasha Grounds in Mbare and in Mberengwa as temperatures rise in Zanu PF before the party’s much-anticipated conference in Victoria Falls next month.

Sparks are expected to fly at Grace’s high-octane rallies this week where “successionists” (G40 code for alleged succession-obsessed Mnangagwa supporters) can expect to come under the cosh.

A politburo member who spoke to the Daily News yesterday said it was “almost inevitable” that Team Lacoste would also clash with the G40 at the party’s next politburo meeting because the situation was fast approaching a “winner takes all scenario”.

But Zanu PF national political commissar, Saviour Kasukuwere, told the Daily News last week that the next politburo meeting would receive a report on the party’s restructuring exercise and also deliberate on whether the former liberation movement should elect substantive provincial chairpersons or not.

The restructuring exercise has been full of challenges in line with the ruling party’s seemingly-unstoppable factional and succession wars. At the weekend, two local officials in the Harare dormitory town of Chitungwiza were axed to death by one of their colleagues, who has since also died in mysterious circumstances, as the divisive exercise winds up.

“We are almost done with restructuring. In fact, we should be through this (last) weekend and a report will be tabled in the politburo which will then decide on the election of provincial leaders,” Kasukuwere said.

Almost all of the party’s provincial chairpersons are working on an interim basis, a situation that both insiders and observers say is untenable, but likely to continue for some time as Zanu PF leaders fear an implosion of the party should they embark on electing new substantive leaders now. 

“What makes the next politburo meeting explosive is that the G40 are likely to raise the issue of constitutional amendments to allow the return of the women’s quota system.

“We are all worried that the party could explode into deadly warfare over this issue, as it will be resisted very strongly,” a party bigwig linked to Team Lacoste said.

Repeated efforts to get a comment from Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo did not bear fruit.

But that Team Lacoste is under pressure at the moment is not a subject for much debate in the party. G40-aligned candidates took at least three quarters of the contested posts in the influential Harare province, a development that one source described as “a very bad omen” for Mnangagwa’s assumed bid to succeed Mugabe.

Party insiders say the G40 are rabidly opposed to Mnangagwa succeeding the increasingly-frail nonagenarian, and that the ambitious Young Turks are backing Grace to take over from her husband.

A well-placed source who spoke to the Daily News also revealed that Harare province would move to support the resolution by the Mashonaland West women’s league, that the ruling party returns the women’s quota system at next month’s increasingly-important Zanu PF conference to be held in Victoria Falls.

“Harare province is also going to demand the return of a women’s quota system. We were supposed to have our conference as a province on Saturday but we are still strategising.

“We heard that in Mashonaland West they have already demanded the return of the women’s quota system and we are going to do the same. I tell you, we want to deal with Ngwena (Mnangagwa) at the conference,” the source added.

The Daily News’ sister paper, the Daily News on Sunday, reported exclusively at the weekend that Grace’s presumed ambitions to elbow out Mnangagwa in the post-congress Zanu PF’s bitter war to succeed Mugabe had got a massive boost on Saturday.

This followed the ruling party’s women’s league in Mashonaland West province openly demanding the return of the women’s quota system in the Zanu PF constitution, a clear statement that they want the first lady to take over from Mnangagwa as party vice president.

Mnangagwa, who has since late last year been heavily tipped to take over from Mugabe, was derailed by the same policy in 2004 when the women’s league again pushed for the elevation of former Vice President Joice Mujuru to be one of the nonagenarian’s deputies.

Sources who attended the women’s league meeting and spoke to the Daily News on Sunday afterwards said there was “unanimous agreement” on the need for a woman to be in the party’s presidium — a move that confirmed what the Daily News accurately reported on last week.

Under this arrangement, the women — together with the G40 — will push for the party to revert to its old constitution at the Victoria Falls conference, so that among the party’s top three leaders “one shall be a woman”.

If this proposal is adopted, it will put paid to Mnangagwa’s long-mooted ambition to succeed Mugabe.

Sources also say all of Zanu PF’s provinces, except for Masvingo and Midlands, are pushing for Grace to become vice president as also exclusively revealed by the Daily News last week.

Meanwhile, senior Zanu PF official and Indigenisation minister Patrick Zhuwao has also savaged what he has described as “attempts by successionists to propagate narratives that seek to suggest that president Mugabe should announce a successor when he has not even completed half of his term”.

“Such successionists seek to hijack and steal president Mugabe’s mandate perhaps because of the realisation that their succession candidates are unelectable,” Zhuwao said, in a politically-pregnant statement at the weekend.

“It is necessary and important that all appointed officials in government and the politburo are reminded that they were appointed to assist the president and as such they must remain loyal and distance themselves from successionist narratives.

“Failure to do so confirms disloyalty to the one centre of power, president Mugabe,” Zhuwao added.

Comments (37)

Ndibatsireiwo vadare, does our constitution allow people who were born outside the country to ascend to presidency. Grace was born in Benoni in South Africa, the records will show. I aint no expert on the matter, magweta tibatsireiwo. Ngwena, zvaiwanawo hayo. He has been quite diplomatic most of the time about the demise of Madam VP, but he engineered it and celebrated it openly on a few ocassions. Do i feel sorry for him? Should I? The inquest report into the General's death hardens my heart against him and his ilk.

Lodza - 18 November 2015

you just read party of the constitution ,go a head never summarize things ,the constitution says if u were not born in Zimbabwe but when u reached 15 years leaving in Zimbabwe u will b best regarded as zim citizen ,again if one of your parents is a zimbabwean u can best regarded as Zimbabwean despite u were born in Congo Brazzaville ,UK ,Qatar, united Arab emirates etc.i never feel sorry for ngwena coz he is worse than his master,so if he is going to be elevated to that post,democracy will be no more ,he is again to old for that post,there must be a clear anarchy which prescribe the appropriate years for one to bid for the presidency in terms of age ,imagine he is 78 already God forbid .tasvangirai although he is short minded he is of essence to revive some strains on our economy ,these guyz are seeking positions to secure their own wealthy not economic change,never and forget ,muzimbabwe hamudiwe aslam or permit kanachii kuty ugaremo but situation ndiyo inokuvondonga wobuda woenda wega,

comrade gabarinocheka svirochete - 18 November 2015

My question is. Do you think Bob is stupid. He may be anything else but stupid no no no. Having said that the next question is whether he is aware his so called blue eyed boy is under attack. Answer of course he is. does he think the first lady can sustainably lead Zim in his absence. No he doesnt. Why then is he allowing this to happen. Because he sees a secure future of his family only in a Zim where zanu pf no longer is in control and has made peace with zim for past wrongs. Ngwena stands in the way of this. The authority with which muzukuru speaks says volumes. ari kuziva dhiri.

magame - 18 November 2015

victoria falls the crocodile falls ,grace si hure rakagona kusevbenzesa simbi dzake ,she made bob to believe that none is these sweet as his beach,this ruined our nation

comrade gabarinocheka svirochete - 18 November 2015

But help me ... is this guy Zambian or Zimbabwean? Still struggling with that question!

mlaza - 18 November 2015

Pamberi na Dr amai.Munhu wese kuna ami.Ngwena is a murderer.

tatenda - 18 November 2015

cant we have young fresh minds as politicians? the ones who know our pain and what we going through, we can not always be represented by people who don't know what to suffer means.

Youngman - 18 November 2015

I wuld rather go for Larcoste as president.he is mature,degreed n knows zanupf and zimbabwe.what proof do yu all hav that he murdered.?bulldust.can yu imagine Grace [president] kasukuwere[vice] moyo 2nd vice] goodness me.God forbid plz. Zhuwawo [chairman] plz lets be serious citizens.Chiyangwa already boasted he financed Grace rallies,min of finance. for now give Ngwena matomu agadzirise farming ne corruption.He is the only seriouse person in zanu who knows the military from moza and he is the 1st one to push china to honour their word or shipout.

violla gwena - 18 November 2015

lets be seriouse on the economy plz.Yu think zealots like moyo.kasukuwere,zhuwawo ,grace,can sit n plan for our country s economy?does anyone with a shread of thinking think these fellows r liberators?Isnt it all about our war.what does Philip know about the war?kasukuwere,grace n zhuwawo.PLZ,dont insult us citezens.If zanu wanted a woman president then why chase teurai away,a known cadre.Its either teurai or ngwena ,simple.It is that simple.ngwena has seen it all,I will bak him to the fullest if teurai is not available.otherwise Teurai n ngwena .plz get bak tgether and rescue the liberation party.Forget yo fights for now,for the good of the country.I was in the thick of war in the 70s,i saw these 2.I fot with them,not these kids.To label ngwena a sellout? yu ?kura mushe

viola gwena - 18 November 2015

EDM was always going to lose. I cant remember him winning anything in the past. Even his VP, he was appointed, not elected.

Inyika - 18 November 2015

hokoyo ngwena naNyakasikana. i think when the former VP mujuru snooked mnanganwa, the qouta system was used. it is him who had been ZPF unconstitutionally elected. the mash west harlots are right lets have a female VP as expected. unfortunately vangwena tanga tirere nezamu mukanwa, zvino mochidzokera kuya kujustice kwamunonyatsonzwisisa kana manga musiri kuronga kubisa mutungamiri wedu. for DR G: i don't like you but it appears you were taught the game and is now practising it.

pamutarara - 18 November 2015

Zvakafanana ESE anotonga nyika inotongwa neropa mumaoko ask zvokutongwa navakadzi kudarika murairo wajehovha,sei bhaiberi richiramba kuri madziamai adzidzise mukereke,haaaa mukai varume,,,ngwena ndizvo,,g40 ndeye mbavha

tsotso - 18 November 2015

komborerwa tsotso.Dai ari mukadzi kwaye maybe.between them Grace,kasukuwere,moyo ,zhuwawo,chiyangwa how many farms do they have?or got for free frm govment?kana qota system yauya fine,its zapu s turn to provide a woman,down goes mphoko,in zapu woman or yo grace,do what yu like,its yo turn.zanu gave 1st mujuru now its zapu s turn.simple.Ngwena padenga.haabve.

viola gwena - 18 November 2015

I cm concur Ngwena & Mujuru should team up & rescue the Party from opportunists. The duo gallantly fought for Zimbabwe's liberation and should be accorded the respect due to th em.

Chief Charumbira - 18 November 2015

Pamberi naMorgan Tsvangirai, Pamberi na Mai Mujuru. Yebo 2018!!

Dhurun'aru - 18 November 2015

those who are saying ,one needs liberation credentials to reign Zimbabwe be serious ,those who liberated our country yes they deserve honour i can not doubt.but its not a yardstick for them to do what so ever to intimidate others in the name of liberation.infect our grandparents witnessed a critical times as civilians in the late 1970s brutally murdered by the ones whom say they liberated us,they only threatened and killed people vachinzi vatengesi for nothing.the war was fought between shonas hanzi hee varungu for what,only few whites were killed and the rest were blacks being killed by blacks.The presidential post is worth to be taken by anyone who has capacity despite your involvement in the liberation struggle,grace says the is o0nly one hero left in Zimbabwe ,you don't need to ask who grace was referring to.yes munangagwa can be the president by virtue of acquiring majority votes yes not because he was there in times of liberation .because we are speaking democracy here?not bureaucracy were everything must be done according to book. munangagwa and shiri lead the gukura hundi faction and killed a lot in matebeleland that same person is bidding for presidency its a fatal tussle .

comrade gabarinocheka svirochete - 18 November 2015

bias all people are equal before god.the mind is the only thing makes people different and they just appear different to others not dressing or biological make up,even girls perform better than boys its even ,

comrade gabarinocheka svirochete - 18 November 2015

guys you are now confusing some of us..gedhi chairo hatichariwone apa..tiratidzei pliz...bhora mugedhi

Tafadzwa - 18 November 2015

garwe is garwe no matter how friendly he might near him and count yr limbs thereafter.i hate grace but she can be very usefull in stopping ngwena.All this is becoz our dear tvangson is busy taking a nap

rugare - 18 November 2015

Mnangagwa ngaende izvozvi.Fire must denounce him publicly at her upcoming ralliesHe is cruel and dangerous to the nation.He must go now we don't need him he can't be a leader that one.

rex mutema - 18 November 2015

Zimbabwe needs leaders with zero war credentials but highly educated. War was fought & won 35 years ago. We need visionaries, who are thinking of the future generations.

Mentalist - 18 November 2015

Zanu(PF) must fall, it must fall

Mill ZIm - 19 November 2015

this tym haulume, you know quite well jeki

jonas - 19 November 2015

Not grace not ngwena will rule Zimbabwe....believe it or not

nyika ndeyedu - 19 November 2015

Grace's utterances prove beyond reasonable doubt that she is not worthy to be appointed as the vice president. She has already caused a lot of disunity to the once vibrant and united liberation party judging by this very short space of time she has been involved in active politics. Just imagine if she is to stay for a single term the degree of calamity that she is posed to unleash on anyone accused of being against those very close to her. The gukurahundi scenario that people take as ngwena's weakness and use it to purge him, it was not his own idea but it was carried out with the full blessings of the president to silence Zapu since there was going to be a serious civil war because Nkomo as a leader of a liberation movement he felt shortchanged after dedicating his life to the struggle in the bush he was forced to play second fiddle to the academic Robert Mugabe. It wasn't fair for the Zapu Front man as such these guys were advised to counter the acts that were planned against them by the umkhondowesizwe by unleashing terror on the masses or regions backing the Zipra forces. This must be condemned not only upon Ngwena and Shiri but the whole of Zanu Pf echelons who were responsible for defense, even though some distanced themselves denouncing such barbaric acts of terror. Why purging Ngwena today yet the head of state even said it was a moment of political madness. I can feel that Ngwena should be honored by giving him his chance to rule Zimbabwe. Remember in 2003 when Dr Amai Mujuru was appointed to the VP post by this women quota system , conversely Ngwena had been voted for by 8 provinces out of 10so let him exercise his democratic right to aspire to be the president. Absolutely there is nothing wrong as long as he does not assasinate the sitting president, fair and fine.

Diramombe Nyamakate - 19 November 2015

baba eddie tsvangirai,dziva,sambiri pindai panyanga tanzwa nembavha dze zanu

gono - 19 November 2015

tsvangirai + amai chaivoivo joice mujuru= huchi nemukaka

chirandu - 19 November 2015

Ngwena has seen and done it all-we can only reward this gallant fighter,mumwe mwana we vhu by rallying behind him for the good of this humble nation.

mahommed hamandishe - 19 November 2015

only welshman ncube is suitable for ruling this country

maiweee - 19 November 2015

grace is dumb and selfish ngwena is a bloody gukurahundist and tswangison falls short of ideas

maiweee - 19 November 2015

Cdes and friends nemamwe mapenzi vasinga understand Zim politics, let me tell all those supporting the useless Gracelands that you are all doomed. Mind you Zim yawora if Grace and her so-called G40 takes over. vanaNgwena vanenge vari papi and kupi kana madzambwana akadaro achiitika. All those who are behind Grace are faggots. Kana mwana wangu Junior anotongawo bedzi kana mati hure ritinge nyika. Tingava zviseko zvenyika ine varume vakaenda kuchikoro kutongwa nekahure/kajoki kane fake Degree reDoctorate... Aiwa isu vanhu vaNgwena ticharwa hondo inonzi Cold war and mese murikutamba nekurota ok. Shura regore iro ratakmirira isu vanhu vaNgwena. Munotamba macdes......forget and smile about hure nejoki rinonzi Grace iro ok

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mama mather - 19 November 2015

Lodza ur question on wether Grace can be a president is best answered by section 92 0f the constitution which provides for qualification for election as requirement is that one should be a citizen by birth or therefore if Grace was born in Benoni she does not qualify...wat remains is whether or not she is a zimbabwean by descent....ur answer there is as gud as mine....

gwena - 19 November 2015

Diramombe l like your advise and comment...Keep it up with your focus or focast.....ndatenda...Pamberi naNgwena

clemence tashaya - 19 November 2015

diramombe talks sense though

nasto - 21 November 2015

Pamberi naNgwena.Pasi nepfambi nengochani idzo vana Moyo naKasukuwere

midlandscrocs - 24 November 2015

Diramombe, I rally behind your submission and wish to remove nothing from it. GRace needs the grace of wisdom to recall that the higher she climbs, harder and deadlier will be her fall from her over-ambitious tirade into the pinnacle of politics. I have observed with a high degree of consistency that all her utterances to the public are devoid of sensitivity, wisdom, maturity and vision. The question is - what will she do for Zimbabwe when she gets the much eyed-for hot seat? I see her a mere imprudent thug who will throw Zimbabwe into a dungeon of political, social, economic and moral misery. I understand she studied a course to do with Communication in London where grapevine submits that she failed dismally. Now, as an open testament of that failure, she just cannot communicate with the public. I personally have no respect for the first lady and I say this without apologies

BURNGUN MOYO - 25 November 2015

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