When the Politburo meets this Wednesday, said Zanu-PF spokesperson Ambassador Simon Khaya Moyo in an interview with The Sunday Mail, factional battles would be on the agenda. This follows a rabid attempt by some officials in the ruling party, using the private Press and via frenzied tweeting on social media, to demean President Mugabe’s appointment of Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa, as well as attempts to play the VP against First Lady and Zanu-PF Women’s League boss Grace Mugabe.
There have been direct attacks on Mr George Charamba after he – in his capacity as Presidential spokesperson – made it clear that the President would not tolerate factionalist and successionist machinations.
War Veterans Minister Ambassador Christopher Mutsvangwa has also been targeted.
Ambassador Khaya Moyo said, “We are still alarmed that this notorious practice is still going on. The President himself has condemned it, but it would appear that factions still exist.
“I cannot pre-empt what will happen in due course, but believe me that at our next Politburo meeting, these matters will be brought up with seriousness of purpose.
“We cannot go on with this disease called factionalism. It does not help us to attract investment and bring stability in the party unity, peace and development which is our motto as a party. It must be weeded out and those responsible must be dealt with without fear or favour.”
Ambassador Khaya Moyo added that the President’s position was uncontestable as he was the only leader elected at Congress.
“The person who is at the centre of all party activities is, naturally, the President. He is the head of the party, the centre of power; the reason being that he is the only one, in terms of our amended constitution, who is elected at Congress.
“The rest of the people, including the VPs and the Politburo, are appointed by the President from elected Central Committee members.
“Given that scenario, naturally, he is the centre of power. This is why some of us have always been bewildered and surprised when we hear that there are factions in the party.
“A faction obviously has a leader, and if you are a leader of a faction, it means you are also a centre of power. This is totally unacceptable and abominable.”
In 2014, the Zanu-PF National People’s Congress unanimously picked the revolutionary establishment’s First Secretary and President as its sole candidate for the next Presidential election, constitutionally due in 2018.
This was after President Mugabe led Zanu-PF to a resounding electoral victory in 2013.
His position as the party’s numero uno was endorsed by the 2015 National People’s Conference.
However, successionists within Zanu-PF have been working against these outcomes, rapidly pushing towards subverting the party constitution, Congress and Conference.
Congress is Zanu-PF’s highest decision-making body whose selected functions can be carried out by Conference.
As stated by party Secretary for Administration Dr Ignatius Chombo in his convocation at the December 2015 indaba, Section 33(3) of Article 6 of Zanu-PF’s Constitution says the powers and functions of the National People’s Conference shall be “to declare the President of the Party elected at Congress as the State presidential candidate of the party”.
Ambassador Khaya Moyo also said President Mugabe and Zanu-PF’s position against abuse of social media platforms to attack fellow party members remained unchanged.
But yesterday Zanu-PF National Political Commissar Cde Saviour Kasukuwere was quoted in The Herald saying the Politburo was unlikely to discuss social media abuses.
Lately, Politburo member (science and technology) Professor Jonathan Moyo has been involved in bitter exchanges with Ambassador Mutsvangwa on Twitter. Ambassador Mutsvangwa has subsequently questioned Prof Moyo’s loyalties.
Yesterday, the War Veterans leader said Prof Moyo was “an aspiring tinpot dictator”.
“Professor (Moyo) extols Rambo, the celluloid American war hero shooting to smithereens lesser human minions. This is a minister from a land that produces immortal modern warriors like legendary General Tongogara.
“Clearly, a stranger to the history of a country he waxes lyrical about and aspires to emerge as its tinpot dictator. The scorn and irreverence of Dr Jekyl and Mr Hyde professor has paradoxically served to arouse the Spirit of Chimurenga and he better pay heed.”
Ambassador Mutsvangwa went on: “I have a modus vivendi with both Kasukuwere and (Youth Minister Patrick) Zhuwao. I am impressed by the youthful energy, and their zeal.
“I pray hard that it makes recourse to all the rich history of the party that has achieved so much. Jonathan Moyo is a different kettle of fish. A war deserter with a chameleon modus operandi, he is the Gregori Rasputin ghost of Zimbabwe politics and governance.
“He long ago sold his soul to the right wing regime change operatives of Uncle Sam. As a revolutionary cadre, I have no truck at all with such a life of compelling treachery.
“These stand out by refusing to submit to discipline by defying His Excellency’s strictures as enunciated through his spokesman. On social media, while it is understandable to set party guidelines, the real focus should be on weeding out planted agents and foreign spies.”