Mphoko faces war vets' guns

HARARE - The long-running feud between Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko and disaffected war veterans loyal to his embattled counterpart, VP Emmerson Mnangagwa, has now hit an all-time low, with one freedom fighter telling the Daily News yesterday that they were now “officially at war” with him.

At the same time, other former freedom fighters who are operating outside the ruling Zanu PF say they “regret having plucked (President Robert) Mugabe from obscurity” to be their leader — adding that he was now allegedly “so drunk with power that he wants to succeed himself”.

The battle of attrition between Mphoko and the main faction of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) has been raging on for months, with the group’s members passing an unprecedented stunning vote of no confidence in the VP earlier this year.

So bad and fraught has the relationship become, that the war veterans claim that Mugabe’s furious outburst against them on Friday was allegedly “at the instigation” of Mphoko who had earlier in the week accused them of engaging in treasonous activities by endorsing Mnangagwa as their preferred successor to Mugabe.

It was also reported at the weekend that Mphoko had allegedly presented a report to Mugabe last week in which ZNLWVA chairperson Christopher Mutsvangwa, secretary general Victor Matemadanda and spokesperson Douglas Mahiya were described as threats to national stability.

“When we said that Mphoko was an accomplished war deserter all along, some people thought that we were being unfair to him. Now, it’s all in the open and everyone can see him for what he is. We are now officially at war with him, and he has no one to blame but himself. He is going down,” one of the war veterans, who spoke to the Daily News yesterday, said.

In the meantime, war veteran Parker Chipoyera — who is now among the senior ex-combatants in former Vice President Joice Mujuru’s Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) party, reiterated yesterday that were it not for freedom fighters “Mugabe would not be the president now”.

This follows Mugabe’s threat last week to deal ruthlessly with all war veterans who are pushing for the ascendancy of Mnangagwa to the throne.

Chipoyera, whose real name is Bernard Manyadza, also told the Daily News that Mugabe was now “no longer fit to continue as the country’s president”.

“He is no longer suitable to govern. Chaanogona kutaura chirungu asi kutungamira nyika nekumanager economy haagone (He is only good at speaking English but is clueless about running the country and managing the economy).

“Izvozvi muhomwe mangu hamuna mari asi mwana wake akanosunungukira kuSingapore (as we speak I do not have a cent in my pocket but Mugabe’s daughter went all the way to Singapore to give birth there),” he said.

The forthright Chipoyera also said Mugabe was “so obsessed with power and wants to crush anybody who opposes him”.

“Kudhakwa nemasimba (He is now drunk with power). He is not qualified to be the country’s president anymore. That is why the comrades (war veterans) are saying let us find an alternative. He now has the king mentality. This is a democratic country and that is why it is called a republic,” he said.

He added that there was “no democracy in Zanu PF and that anybody who dares to challenge that is labelled a dissident”.

Chipoyera’s sentiments came after Mugabe said war veterans must not bully the ruling party and impose on it who should take over from him.

“The dissidents tried it, they were war veterans, and you know what happened. Lots of trouble, lots of fighting, lots of suffering of course to our people and these dissidents activities cannot be allowed.

“Do we see another rise of dissident activity? The leadership with our experience says no to the war veterans’ association. It’s not your function, it’s not your business to talk a lot on who shall succeed the president,” Mugabe thundered.

However, Chipoyera said Mugabe had “forgotten that it was the people who saved him and pushed him to be in his position”.

“Macomrades akarwa kuti abude mujeri muna1974 (war veterans fought hard for him to be released from prison in 1974),” he said, adding that Mugabe had much to be grateful for, for freedom fighters accepting to be led by him.

Chipoyera also said that the threat against the war veterans was “synonymous with the Gukurahundi era” where an estimated 20 000 innocent civilians were killed mainly in Matabeleland and the Midlands — all because “Mugabe did not want to work with others”.

“You (Mugabe) want one centre of power and now want to use the scorched-earth policy to crush the comrades. We all know that the campaign which led to the killing of the 20 000 innocent civilians in the 1980s that were called dissidents was only led by less than 100 people.

“That is the same trick that is being used now. That’s outrageous. Who are you (Mugabe) targeting, because the comrades are the ones who took you from jail. You are who you are because of the war veterans.

“You go to Singapore to get treatment and your daughter flew over 8 000 kilometres to give birth in a foreign land, but the comrades are giving birth in their homes,” the emotional Chipoyera charged.

Comments (13)

how do yu plug a man out of obscurity in 1975 to lead zanu pf when fact tells us he was SG of the movement at that time,did the position he held not make him the second highest official in zanu?did yo favourite cephas msipa not tell us he went around the country in the early 1960s adressing people about what life is like in a free country having come back from ghana?HISTORY WRITTEN BY WHOEVER clearly shows the president was involved in a key role in all stages of the struggle leading to the same idiotic warvets to say their favourite mnangagwa was always at mugabes side,we are tired of the same lines,zanu followed maosist idealogy,the politics led the gun and not the other way

truth - 13 June 2016

TRUTH you are wrong. Mugabe was not SG but was Publicity Secretary of ZANU. Those are two different positions

Dingiswayo - 13 June 2016

Ngazvibayane.Manga majaira kushungurudza povo.

Tahir Iqbal - 13 June 2016

In the 70s Mugabe was our hero and all of us worshiped him as our savior of colonial oppression. The first few years were great, education and standards of living improved for the majority. All was fine until opposition appeared on the horizon and he lost that referendum? Everything but himself was to blame? Out went the white farmers and conditions were made impossible for foreign investors.....and from that moment onward the decline into extreme economic hardship commenced and getting worse by each passing day. Now our greatest and most supportive allies, the Chinese, are the targets as he plays one foreign power against another. All the fat cats in Government do not feel the hardships but merely praise his contribution towards black empowerment and the total liberation of this country. I wish it were true and that I could feel the benefit....but I don't. I feel worse off now than ever before but I won't go and leave my wife and children behind...I just can't do that.

Mbewa - 13 June 2016

I thought when people were attacking Mnangagwa they were saying attacking a Mgabe appointee is attacking the person who did the appointing? The problem in Zanu is a mess of their making, all of these people are beholden to Mugabe. He is their maker, the people who could have challenged him because they were not beholden to him he long neutralised (Chitepo, Tongogara, Solomon Mujuru etc) and replaced with praise singers.

Galore - 13 June 2016


Chotototo Zvangu - 13 June 2016

Some war vets have themselves to blame,prior to Zanu pf elective congress,they said he was the only centre of power and went on to amend the constitution of the party giving the president unlimited powers to appoint and fire members of the politi bureau,the primary objective being to squeeze political oxygen out of Joice and create political space for their preferred vice presidential candidate who couldn't manage to upstage Joice in a normal democratic process.Look now, guys are paying the ultimate price.It's not long before all the Zanu pf political oxygen is squeezed out of them by the G40 if it ever exists.G40 is working tirelessly to ensure that all war vets are flushed out of the party structures before the 2018 General Elections.

Gen. Spinola - 13 June 2016

Leadership renewal is not a crime under normal democracy. Zimbabwe knows of no other leader than RG Mugabe. 34 years of failure have lapsed. It is time for leadership renewal. We have long past known that Mugabe suffers (NPD) Narcicistic Personality Disorder. People of such disposition can not withstand opposition whatsoever. Solomon Mujuru was the only person who could Mugabe in face that he must retire. So, what happened to Solomon? He was killed by RG for the same reason of challenging him. He might as well kill everybody. We are tired of this crap! RG Mugabe's legacy is that he ran Zimbabwe into a failed state in Southern Africa.

Mbareboy - 13 June 2016

I dnt like warvets bt I feel for viola.she packs dinamite.

hunda - 14 June 2016

Gen. Spinola uri munyepi. Mnangagwa beat Joice 6-4 in 2004 but was prevented from becoming VP by Mugabe. Which other democratic process are you referring to. No matter what, ari kuenda Mugabe chete.

Wezhira wezhara - 15 June 2016

When many of us said that Gukurahundi was all about Mugabe and his determination to establish a one party state in Zim; all of you who are now crying about his power hunger and intolerance of opposing views disagreed and accused us of not wanting to be ruled by a Shona (now a Malawian) and tribalism. Today you are saying exactly the same things we were saying about Mugabe in the 1980s. Gukurahundi was never about dissidents. Dissidents were indirectly created by Mugabe and Solomon Mujuru through frustrating former ZIPRA Cadres out of the army after they had disarmed them and integrated them into the ZNA. Its like your boss deliberately frustrating you at work until you are rebellious - that is what exactly happened. Mugabe signed up with the North Koreans for the training of the Gukurahundi 5th Brigade only a few months after assuming power in 1980 ; why, when there was no threat at the time? How did he know that there would be the so-called "dissidents" in a few years down the line, if he wasn't planning to create them? In a volatile situation like this; the South Africans, with their own concerns about the MK and the ANC obviously took advantage. The first opening paragraph of the 1987 Unity Accord, which immediately refers to the creation of a one party state is telling - it is a clear indication that Mugabe's harassing of Dr Nkomo and the Gukurahundi Mission was all about crushing the then strongest opposition and furthering his intentions of a one party state and this he got through playing the tribal card so very effectively. Indeed, he is still with us to this day 36 years down the line and there has been no let up on opponents. Only that now his Gukurahundi mission has now spread to the Shona speaking provinces!

Kwakubus'uMambo no Mzilikazi - 15 June 2016

I don't care what Mugabe does to this war vets, they refused to let him go when he lost the election, now they must feel the heat

TGZ - 19 June 2016

I don't care what Mugabe does to these war Vets, coz they refused to let him go when he lost the election in 2008

TGZ - 19 June 2016

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