Mnangagwa suffers crushing political defeat
Also in the doomed boat captained by Mnangagwa is Jonathan Moyo and Patrick Chinamasa - two of the most unpopular politicians in President Robert Mugabe's war cabinet.
A Zanu PF insider siad last night: "It's a crushing blow to Mnangagwa. His whole political career hangs on a gossamer thread."
He added: "There was a time when everyone assumed it would be safe sailing for Mnangagwa, but there are some among us who cautioned that it won't be easy. The rest is now history."
To rub salt to injury, Mugabe, in comments thought to have been directed at Mnangagwa and his camp, said Zanu PF had been divided by politicians backed by "capitalists with links to Brtitain".
"There are elements that are developing within our party, divisive elements that we must take care of," the 80-year-old leader said on state television Monday night. "Others are now trying through clandestine ways, divisive ways, to get to posts in the party without your authority, but using cunning method to sway you. (They are) using lots of money to sway you."
"Don't be divided, and don't be tempted. We are not there for purchase," Mugabe said.
From the country's 10 provinces, six nominated a woman - Joyce Mujuru - as the ruling Zanu PF’s second deputy secretary. Mujuru will now go on to become second vice president with Joseph Msika.
Mnangagwa's running mate Chinamasa attempted to wrest the party chairmanship from John Nkomo but got his fingures burned. Chinamasa won four provinces, to Nkomo's six.
Moyo, the camp's chief strategist stayed away from embarassing himself, and emerged with the least scratch marks, but his ego shattered.
Provincial executives which voted consist 44 members including the party’s youth league, women and the main wing. They met throughout the country yesterday to nominate the party’s presidium and members of the central committee.
Manicaland, Mashonaland Central, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Harare and Matabeleland North nominated Mujuru, ahead of Mnangangwa, Zanu PF's secretary for administration and Parliamentary Speaker, and the party’s women league boss Thenjiwe Lesabe.
Masvingo selected Lesabe and Mnangagwa to become President Mugabe’s co-vice presidents, while Bulawayo province defied the party directive to choose a woman to fill the top post.
Bulawayo, Masvingo, Midlands and Matabeleland South provinces nominated Mnangagwa and Lesabe for vice presidency and Justice Minister Patrick Chinamasa as national chairman.
All in all Chinamasa was selected as national chairman by four provinces-Masvingo, Mat South, Manicaland and the Midlands. In Bulawayo, Mnangagwa reportedly polled 50 votes, Mujuru 18, and Lesabe five while Msika was retained.
once touted as President Mugabe’s heir apparent – was left
clutching at straws as his political future in Zanu PF was dealt a heavy
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