Crunch time for Mugabe's warring Zanu PF

HARARE - Zanu PF insiders say President Robert Mugabe is in a catch 22 as the warring ruling party’s bigwigs gather in Harare tomorrow for an eagerly-awaited politburo meeting — which is set to deliberate on the political future of embattled national political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere.

This comes as the Daily News reported at the weekend that a probe team which was appointed by the wily nonagenarian — to investigate grave allegations against the under-fire Local Government minister — had completed its work.

Ahead of tomorrow’s crunch meeting — where Mugabe will require the biblical wisdom of Solomon to stem Zanu PF’s worsening, mindless bloodletting — Kasukuwere’s backers have claimed that the Jacob Mudenda-led party probe has exonerated him on most of the allegations he faces, including charges that he was working to topple Mugabe from power.

But, and as expected, Kasukuwere’s enemies are insistent that the combative commissar is “a dead man walking”, and that it is now “a matter of time” before he is relieved of his duties in the former liberation movement which is consumed by its ugly tribal, factional and succession wars.

This is the unpleasant climate in which Mugabe will be called upon to make a decisive ruling, as Kasukuwere also comes face to face for the first time with many of the senior party officials — drawn from the party’s 10 provinces — who supported calls for him to be relieved of his duties at both party and government levels.

Well-placed sources confirmed to the Daily News yesterday that after Mudenda recently submitted his report to both Mugabe and Zanu PF secretary for administration Ignatius Chombo, the Kasukuwere matter was now “ready for dissection” at tomorrow’s politburo.

The usually reliable insiders also claimed that Mudenda’s report “cleared” Kasukuwere of the most serious charge that he has been facing — that of plotting to oust Mugabe from power.

“While there are other issues being raised in the petition from Mashonaland Central, the key issue was probably that of the setting up of parallel structures which the PCC (provincial coordinating committee)  failed to identify, and which could prove to be his (Kasukuwere’s) way out of trouble.

“Nevertheless, there are other issues regarding the Kitsiyatota Mine that might not please the president . . . It is now up to him (Mugabe) to decide,” one of the insiders said.

However, one of Kasukuwere’s party rivals told the Daily News that there was “no way back” for him, as all the former liberation movement’s provinces had sent a “clear message that he is no longer wanted”.

“Remember there are other provinces that have passed votes of no confidence against the PC. So, those cases ought to be heard again . . . it’s game on.

“Masvingo, for example, has written a petition to say it no longer has confidence in his (Kasukuwere’s) leadership, and we expect that to be considered.

“How can he therefore be exonerated on the basis of one province, when the calls for his dismissal are nationwide?” the senior party official said.

University of Zimbabwe political science lecturer Eldred Masunungure said while Mugabe would try to appease the Zanu PF heavyweights pushing for Kasukuwere’s sacking, the nonagenarian was unlikely to jettison him.

Masunungure said Mugabe would, in the worst case scenario, re-deploy the Mount Darwin South legislator to another senior party portfolio.

“I doubt he (Kasukuwere) will be chopped . . . but the party may redeploy him to another portfolio and this will be a way of dealing with people’s anger.

“It won’t be another (former vice president Joice) Mujuru case . . . He will survive as a politburo member . . . because as you know, this issue is about factional fights. Mugabe regards Kasukuwere as an asset. He may have messed up, but he will survive the chop,” Masunungure told the Daily News.

Kasukuwere has been fighting to save his political career over the past few weeks, with angry Zanu PF supporters pushing for his ouster from both his party and government positions, over a raft of charges which include allegedly plotting to topple Mugabe from power.

Also under fire has been his brother Dickson Mafios, who is the acting Zanu PF chairperson for Mashonaland Central.

Apart from having to deal with Kasukuwere’s saga, sources say Mugabe and his colleagues are also expected to deal with the contested results of the Masvingo provincial chairmanship election, which was comprehensively won by an alleged Team Lacoste candidate, Ezra Chadzamira — who walloped Mutero Masanganise who had pulled out from the mini internal poll days before polling, citing a number of irregularities.

Masanganise told the Daily News yesterday that he was hopeful the politburo would “deal with” the burning Masvingo issue decisively.

“I am waiting for the politburo to deliberate on the issue. For me, there was no election done to choose the Masvingo chairperson,” he said.

Masanganise — who is linked to the embattled Generation 40 (G40) faction, which in turn is opposed to Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa succeeding Mugabe — pulled out of the Masvingo poll re-run  arguing that it was illegal.

Mugabe and the politburo had nullified the results from the initial regional poll, which was won by Chadzamira — amid claims of irregularities, including people not voting in some districts.

Chadzamira, who is the former regional chairman and an alleged Mnangagwa backer, crushed Masanganise then — polling 12 393 votes against his opponent’s 4 888, amid the allegations of rigging and failure by people in Mwenezi and some parts of Chiredzi to vote.

Sources have previously told the Daily News that Zanu PF’s ever-fluid factional and succession politics were changing gear again, as there was now an apparent realignment of alliances within the warring former liberation movement — as Mnangagwa’s allies cranked up their assault on the G40.

Observers have also consistently said Mugabe’s failure to resolve Zanu PF’s thorny succession riddle is fuelling the ruling party’s deadly infighting, which is worsening by the day.

The 93-year-old has studiously refused to name a successor, insisting that the party’s congress has that mandate: to choose a person of their own choice.

Comments (8)

The perfect case of mother hen shielding her prize chick, only to sacrifice the same later.

Essexvale - 16 May 2017

Ummmmmmmm. Tyson is not going anywhere. Here to stay.

Hezvoko! - 16 May 2017

no wisdom needed here, Bob is in control and he is going to keep Tyson.

solomon - 16 May 2017

I am no fan of Kasukuwere, who has shown himself to be as corrupt as hell, but perhaps these people should actually doing some work, instead of eating each other to stay in power.

david taylor - 16 May 2017

Tyson wema pothole anonwisa vanhu masewage. Kana revoutionary party yacho hapana hurevolutionary hwainoratidza. Kunetsana kuda kuramba muchiwedzera dhodhi muHarare. What a sad image of Salisbury Tyson. Pamberi nezanu!. Ngatipemberei Zimasset-Maroadlocks. Changosara paroad mapurisa kubvunza kuti "makapfeka underwear here zvamuri kudriver

Kovanhu vaibikira makanganwa - 17 May 2017

You see, Zimbabweans are myopic when it comes to politics. Everything they say or do is based on what they think suits Mugabe. The minute he comes out in this meeting and says he is in support of Tyson, that those calling for his ouster are detractors who want regime change; you will see a clamour to quickly get on the "preferred" side of things. Notably, has anyone else noticed that whenever someone is accused of trying to oust Mugabe, no evidence is ever procured in support of this? Throughout our political history there have been countless others (MT, Ndabaningi, Joyce) who all faced some accusation or another, some even faced criminal trials, for trying to remove Mugabe - albeit Joyce tried to remove him lawfully by getting provincial chairmen to vote for her. They were all quickly bashed left, right and centre and what is telling is that at the end of their victimisation (when the political process had moved on) and Mugabe was no longer in danger of removal (legal or otherwise), there is no accountability to stand by their accusation and either admit they were wrong or reaffirm with hard evidence that the accusation was true. You may feel sorry for Tyson, I don't. He led a lot of Mugabe processes - he was the one who moved the motion to remove Rugare Gumbo, he led the calls against Joyce. So ironic that he is facing the same tactics he used o others. I bet he knows exactly what will be done to him. His only saving grace is that Mugabe is not done with him, as he needs to keep the factions evenly matches, lest one removes him from power. Meanwhile....our country burns and wilters under this misrule where politicians charged with running the country are wallowing in their cesspool of factionalism, patronage and self aggrandisement.

Kwidz - 17 May 2017

You see, Zimbabweans are myopic when it comes to politics. Everything they say or do is based on what they think suits Mugabe. The minute he comes out in this meeting and says he is in support of Tyson, that those calling for his ouster are detractors who want regime change; you will see a clamour to quickly get on the "preferred" side of things. Notably, has anyone else noticed that whenever someone is accused of trying to oust Mugabe, no evidence is ever procured in support of this? Throughout our political history there have been countless others (MT, Ndabaningi, Joyce) who all faced some accusation or another, some even faced criminal trials, for trying to remove Mugabe - albeit Joyce tried to remove him lawfully by getting provincial chairmen to vote for her. They were all quickly bashed left, right and centre and what is telling is that at the end of their victimisation (when the political process had moved on) and Mugabe was no longer in danger of removal (legal or otherwise), there is no accountability to stand by their accusation and either admit they were wrong or reaffirm with hard evidence that the accusation was true. You may feel sorry for Tyson, I don't. He led a lot of Mugabe processes - he was the one who moved the motion to remove Rugare Gumbo, he led the calls against Joyce. So ironic that he is facing the same tactics he used o others. I bet he knows exactly what will be done to him. His only saving grace is that Mugabe is not done with him, as he needs to keep the factions evenly matches, lest one removes him from power. Meanwhile....our country burns and wilters under this misrule where politicians charged with running the country are wallowing in their cesspool of factionalism, patronage and self aggrandisement.

Kwidz - 17 May 2017

I believe the press should start talking of bread and butter issues instead of barraging us with news of zanu pf 's unending and mindless infighting. Journalists should get to the bottom of why people can not get their hard earned cash from banks ? who is conning farmers of their sweat and blood when they s buy their tobacco at low prices and resell at very high prices ? Why is service delivery virtually absent in all our towns and who is responsible for this ? Why are there no jobs for our graduates ? Journalists must know that we do not eat zanu pf succession wars. These fights are a distraction from real issues which journalists must investigate and report . Journalism in this country is in the intensive care unit. please report bread and butter issues, we are tired of zanu pf wars. We benefit nothing out of these stories.

shuramatongo - 17 May 2017

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