JOCKEYING for positions and disagreements over restrictions to qualify to hold positions in the Zimbabwe People First continue to dog the party with fears the internal strife could delay its national convention expected to be held next month.
As jostling for positions in the Dr Joice Mujuru led party escalates, its coordinator for South Africa Mr Lawrence Mavhaire has threatened to block members above 70 from holding positions in the party.
In a document titled, ‘the 5 Pillars of balance in the Zimbabwe People First Party’ circulated on the party’s WhatsApp chat groups, Mr Mavhaire also demanded that Dr Mujuru’s deputy must not come from among those expelled from the ruling Zanu-PF.
“We need the wisdom of the elders to sharpen strategy and we need the energy of our youth to implement and execute. Since service delivery is more about execution and implementation, it’s imperative that we have domination of younger builders (20, 30, 40s) in our leadership structures.
“This business of retirement candidates at 70 plus years still fighting for political office or relevance must stop. Yours is the Council of Elders, my dear Elders,” said Mr Mavhaire.
Dr Mujuru was expelled along a number of former Zanu-PF big wigs including Mr Rugare Gumbo, Mr Dzikamai Mavhaire, Mr Kudakwashe Bhasikiti and Mr Ray Kaukonde over allegations of plotting to overthrow President Mugabe.
Also expelled was former war veterans chairperson Mr Jabulani Sibanda.
From the former Zanu-PF officials, Mr Bhasikiti and Mr Sibanda are said to be eyeing the vice presidency while some members from Bulawayo are reportedly suggesting the inclusion of former minister Dr Nkosana Moyo to be appointed Dr Mujuru’s deputy.
Other officials like Mr Bhasikiti, Mr Mavhaire, Mr Kaukonde and former minister Mr Sylvester Nguni are eyeing positions in the party’s national executive council which would be the ZimPF’s highest decision making body.
The South African coordinator in the document said Dr Mujuru’s deputy should come from a different political background in an indication that Dr Mujuru’s former Zanu-PF colleagues could fall by the wayside at the convention. “We can’t and we must never allow our top leadership positions to be congested by former Zanu-PF members only,” he said.
“We need a balance, it follows therefore from this pillar that president Mujuru’s vice or deputy cannot be a former Zanu-PF member. We need inclusive leadership from ward level to national level. Only then are we a new party.”
The ZimPF spokesperson, Mr Jealousy Mawarire, was unreachable for comment yesterday but he was quoted in the private media last week saying the competition for positions would strengthen the party. Herald