THE union between MDC-T leader Mr Morgan Tsvangirai and former Vice President Dr Joice Mujuru that played out publicly for the first time in Gweru over the weekend is a project that started before the death of the late General Solomon Mujuru, The Herald can reveal.
The Herald has it on good authority that the late General had several meetings with the MDC-T leader and agreed on a scheme of taking over and a power-sharing formula that would incorporate the General’s interests.
It is understood that the project had the backing of Western countries who felt that MDC-T needed someone with liberation war credentials to enhance its power bid against President Mugabe.
Confidential information obtained by this paper yesterday showed that the relationship between Mr Tsvangirai and Amai Mujuru had its strong roots beyond the Gweru meeting.
A source near closed door executive briefings during the inclusive Government era pointed to a number of cases where Amai Mujuru’s actions during her tenure as Vice President raised a lot of suspicion.
Said the source: “Even at the funeral of General (Mujuru), we had a very awkward situation where MDC-T people were part and parcel of the mourners which is quite unusual. That stemmed from the interaction that was taking place behind the scenes involving the General or some of his aides and Mr Tsvangirai but also underpinned with Western interests.
“One of the key areas of conflict between Mai Mujuru and President Mugabe during the Government of National Unity dispensation revolved around the question how Amai Mujuru, building on the relationship that was there during the era of her late husband and Mr Tsvangirai, was interacting with Mr Tsvangirai beyond acceptable levels. It reached a stage where there was an overt collaboration between Mai Mujuru and MDC-T people led by Theresa Makone in Parliament.
“There was a lot of noise over the issue of Monica Mutsvangwa and Beatrice Nyamupinga over women representation in Parliament. The matter could not be resolved at party level after Monica won repeatedly during party primary elections and there was a rule that if you go against the decision of the party you will have automatically expelled yourself from the party.
“Nyamupinga, on the advice of Mai Mujuru, proceeded to challenge the outcome of party primary elections and the matter escalated until it was eventually settled through election in the Parliament at which Beatrice won not on the strength of a change in voting patterns in Zanu-PF but on the strength of MDC-T support.”
Prior to that, the source said, Mai Mujuru had met with Mrs Theresa Makone and other MDC-T officials at her offices. The source said there were several developments where on policy issues Mai Mujuru would find herself in the same camp with Mr Tsvangirai against her boss including Parliament and in other settings.
“When she chose to be courteous, she would keep quiet which would deny the President the support on an issue or she would openly side with MDC-T people.”
The source said the Nyamupinga issue was raised during one of the briefings as to whom she was representing after winning on an opposition vote and Mai Mujuru could not give an answer.
“She remained silent pretending as if she was working on something on her iPad,” said the source.
The source further intimated that Mai Mujuru never thought of leaving Zanu-PF but wanted to take it over. After her expulsion, she now needed Mr Tsvangirai to advance her cause.
“Chakauya ndechakauya and the President decided to expel Mai Mujuru thereby changing the whole equation and creating a situation where an erstwhile confident Mai Mujuru then realises that she needed Tsvangirai,” said the source.
“This is the stage which was wished for by the Anglo-Americans where MDC partnered a person with liberation war credentials. To close watchers, the Gweru meeting was not news but simply a high point in a process that had begun with the late General. But to give that whole process a semblance of local causation, there was the factor of the state of the economy. There is also the issue of a quarrel with the war veterans association which has triggered a realignment of forces.”
The rogue elements in the association could now associate with MDC-T now that Mai Mujuru had openly made it legitimate to do so, it becomes not an abberation but a sign of the times.
This is simply because initially Mai Mujuru was joined by the likes of Parker Chipoyera of Zimbabwe Liberators Platform, who was a dissident from the days of Mozambique and therefore could not be used to persuade war veterans to join.
“Now that there is this leadership of the association, which is not tainted with the Mozambican rebellion, the calculation of the British and the Americans is that the time has now come for the war veterans to transfer their loyalty en-masse to the new alliance following Mai Mujuru.”
The source said current developments in opposition politics are not accidental but part of the grand plan that had been in existence for long.
“Two key things happen; Mujuru formalises the launch of her party thereby demonstrating to the British and the Americans that she has broken ties with Zanu-PF because she was being labelled a Zanu-PF project, and secondly she goes on a countrywide tour holding rallies thereby demonstrating what she represents numerically,” said the source.
“In the same vein MDC-T is doing its own rolling campaign and the two processes appear separate yet in reality they are connected. Before long, Tsvangirai, who is already unwell, appoints Mudzuri and Chamisa, who both had opposed any alliance with Mai Mujuru and her party. Thereafter the way was clear. It’s a mating of porcupines strutting on different grounds gravitating towards each other cautiously.”
However, the source said it should be noted that it was Mai Mujuru who had played into MDC-T politics.
“Not only does Mai Mujuru share a platform with Tsvangirai in Gweru she is captured with an open hand, to suggest that she has become a political concubine of MDC-T,” said the source.
“She is not the one who absorbed MDC-T because that open hand summarises the politics of opposition.
“Another fundamental aspect of this marriage is rogue members of the war veterans association who are seen having lunch with MDC-T stormtrooper group #Tajamuka. It should be clear to all and sundry that the war veterans association is a welfare organisation as explained by General Constantino Guveya Dominic Nyikadzino Chiwenga. It does not represent the war veterans or speak for them politically.”
The variance between the associaion’s rogue leadership and the generality of the war veterans was demonstrated during the Heroes and Defence Forces Day holidays when veterans of the war attended both events contrary to the call for a boycott.’’