Cracks have emerged in Zanu-PF leadership structures in Mashonaland Central over a controversial resolution that seeks to challenge the party’s one centre of power principle that empowers the President and First Secretary to appoint his deputies.
Cde Dickson Mafios, who is acting chairman of Mashonaland Central Province, reportedly smuggled the resolution (now known as Mafioso) into the final set of the provincial resolutions ahead of the Zanu-PF Annual National People’s Conference in Masvingo next month.
Some members of the province have since disowned the centre of power resolution.
However, provincial members who exposed Cde Mafios’ plans are now reported to be targets for a vote of no confidence, which is allegedly being engineered by Zanu-PF national commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere.
Sensing the plot which was supposed to be effected starting yesterday, the members have reportedly decided to pre-empt it by resigning from the provincial executive.
The offence the provincial members allegedly committed was to talk about Cde Mafios’ resolution to The Herald newspaper.
First to throw in the towel was Cde Shantel Mbereko, who is the deputy secretary for education.
She tendered her resignation from her provincial position at the party’s provincial offices in Bindura yesterday morning, before a provincial executive meeting that was convened at the same venue later in the day.
In her resignation letter that was copied to Cde Kasukuwere and secretary for administration Cde Ignatius Chombo, Cde Mbereko said she took the action for security reasons.
Cde Mbereko said other party members told her that her life and that of her family were in danger.
“The pressure resulted in me receiving numerous calls from people advising me to watch out for my life and that of my family and hence (I) decided to quit and remain a party card holder,” reads part of her letter.
“The reason is I responded to a call from someone who I did not know was from The Herald. But the main issue is I honestly explained that the resolution to have Vice Presidents voted for did not come from the Women’s League, but was smuggled in as it was against the amended party constitution, which gave all powers to the President,” said Cde Mbereko.
“The second reason is that the national commissar Cde Kasukuwere is victimising (me) — in fact he did that in the coordination (meeting) held on Sunday and even before, his intention being to grab the (Kitsiyatota) mining project I and other women own.
“He even openly stated it in the meeting that the mine should be taken away from us by force and made a provincial project.”
Cde Mbereko said Cde Kasukuwere wanted to grab the mine for personal benefit.
Cde Mbereko declared that she would fight to the bitter end to expose the evil works by Cde Kasukuwere under the name of the party in Mashonaland Central.
Cde Mbereko said Cde Kasukuwere was a national figure and it was mind-boggling why he was obsessed with issues happening at provincial level.
“(Cde) Dickson Mafios was the first to respond to The Herald reporter when he stated: “One centre of power is not benefiting anyone and it’s undemocratic.
“The national political commissar pretends to be blind and deaf to that and decided to zero in on me, clearly showing that he had come to clear his brother by riding over us and myself in particular.”
A provincial executive meeting that was meant to pass a vote of no confidence on Cde Mbereko yesterday turned out to be a farce after she pre-empted it by her resignation.
Cde Mafios denied that they had a meeting yesterday.
“I don’t know about that meeting,” he curtly said.
Efforts to get a comment from Cde Kasukuwere were fruitless as his mobile phone went unanswered.
A provincial member who attended the meeting said: “It became difficult to pass a vote of no confidence on the other comrades after Cde Mbereko pre-emptied the plan.
“It was later resolved that the matter of people who spoke to the media over that resolution will be dealt with next year.” Herald