Report by The Zimbabwean
HARARE – Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa is gunning for the ouster of Saviour Kasukuwere and Jonathan Moyo for fronting a rival camp within Zanu (PF), sources say.
The VP is reportedly unsettled by the two who he is said to view as threats to his political plan. Kasukuwere and Moyo have been linked to a Zanu (PF) group branded G40 that comprises young party Turks who feel they must take over leadership.
Ironically, Mnangagwa, Kasukuwere and Moyo fought from the same corner to oust former vice president, Joice Mujuru ahead of Zanu (PF)’s December 2014 congress. Mnangagwa replaced Mujuru with whom he fought a turf war to succeed Mugabe.
His elevation in December was seen by many as a sign that the party leader had anointed him his successor. But his scheme seems to be crumbling, amid reports that Moyo and Kasukuwere are opposed to his ascendancy to the party presidency.
“The G40 is fiercely opposed to Mnangagwa. They think he lacks the calibre and clout to run the party and country and also feel that it is time the old wood must make way for young blood.
“Mnangagwa has seen through this and he knows Moyo and Kasukuwere are leading the campaign against him, so he is pushing to have the two either demoted or removed from powerful positions,” said a senior Zanu (PF) member.
“He raised the matter as AOB (Any Other Business) at the politburo meeting and suggested that the matter be put on the agenda at a future meeting. His position was that party structures were talking of a new camp called G40 which had the potential of causing divisions in the party,” said the source.
“He seems to be plotting to expose Moyo and Kasukuwere as a way of discrediting them in the eyes of the president. He wants them to be seen as power mongers,” he added.
President Mugabe has repeatedly shown his hatred for people who show ambitions to replace him.
Last weekend, he rapped people supporting Mnangagwa on one hand and the other co-vice president, Phelekezela Mphoko, on the other, saying they must not be jockeying for them as that was dividing the party.
Mugabe said Mnangagwa and Mphoko were equal and none should be seen as senior to the other.
“If you are choosing between two vice presidents, you are beginning your own gamatox. They (VPs) occupy equal space. If you say you want this one to succeed, you are already bringing division within the people,” he said. (Gamatox is a label for Zanu (PF) members who support Mujuru.)
This is despite the fact that Mnangagwa has held senior positions in the party while Mphoko entered active politics only last year, with reports indicating that he did not even belong to Zanu (PF) grassroots structures before congress.
Mugabe’s statement echoed Moyo’s position several months ago that Mnangagwa was not guaranteed to take over from Mugabe. The reported move to undermine Moyo and Kasukuwere comes at a time the information minister has been stood down from his post on a technicality.
He was appointed non-constituency minister but ran and won in the June 10 elections and, according to unconfirmed reports, he was forced to stop leading the ministry until he is sworn in as an elected office holder. The move by Mugabe to stand Moyo down has sparked speculation, with some observers saying it is part of the internal fights within Zanu (PF).
Kasukuwere, currently the Zanu (PF) national political commissar, clashed openly with Mnangagwa ahead of the June by-elections over candidates and the young minister recently threatened to “fix” the Midlands province where the vice president is considered the godfather.