ZANU PF is set to hold yet another explosive politburo meeting which is almost certain to be dominated by debate on the current infighting within the ruling party which has since claimed the scalps of seven party provincial chairpersons aligned to Vice President Joice Mujuru.
Tensions are high within Zimbabwe’s ruling party after a faction led by Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa turned the heat on the Mujuru camp for allegedly fanning factionalism.
The factional fights have seen seven provincial chairpersons aligned to Mujuru being kicked out over the past three weeks as the race to succeed the 90-year-old Mugabe gets uglier.
The chairpersons who have been ousted are Ray Kaukonde (Mashonaland East), Andrew Langa (Matabeleland South) and Callistus Ndlovu (Bulawayo), Temba Mliswa (Mashonaland West), Killian Gwanetsa (Masvingo), Jason Machaya (Midlands) and Amos Midzi (Harare).
The current dismissal of party provincial chairmen was torched by First Lady Grace Mugabe’s recent demands for Mujuru’s ouster together with her backers.
During her recent nation-wide rallies, Grace openly denigrated provincial chairpersons aligned to Mujuru and threatened them with dismissal from their positions.
Spurred by this, militant party supporters have also turned the heat on the provincial chairpersons.
Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo, who has been fighting in Mujuru’s corner, refused to be drawn into discussing the agenda for the politburo meeting referring this reporter to Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa.
“You know I don’t speak on the politburo agenda; why don’t you talk to Cde Mutasa (Didymus). I think he would be in a position to assist you,” Gumbo said.
Mutasa declined to discuss the agenda for Thursday’s meeting.
Asked if the ouster of party provincial chairs shall form the agenda, Mutasa insisted: “I said I cannot tell you that.”
However, the issue of the ousted chairpersons is expected to feature prominently at the meeting with Mugabe widely expected to give his seal of approval on the highly divisive dismissals.
The last politburo meeting saw hundreds of bussed party supporters besieging the party’s headquarters in Harare demanding Mujuru’s sacking.
The politburo, a closed door party meeting, has since been the only platform from which the Mujuru camp has tried to return fire following vicious attacks from the Mnangagwa camp.Advertisement
Away the acrimony that is rocking the party, Zanu PF is also expected to discuss progress on funding for its December elective congress and amendments to the party’s constitution, key among them the alignment of sections of the 1987 Unity Accord dealing with vice-presidency with the party’s constitution.
The Mnangagwa camp is also fighting to push through amendments that will ensure the direct appointment of vice presidents as opposed to the current system where they are nominated by party structures.