HARARE – President Robert Mugabe’s nephew Patrick Zhuwao has teared into the country’s boisterous war veterans, saying that “real ex-combatants were not noise-makers, but progressive people who do not abuse the youth”.
In response to an unprecedented attack by a group calling itself the Zimbabwe Youth Action Plan (ZYAP) on him and two other Cabinet ministers linked to the ambitious Generation 40 (G40) faction, the Indigenisation minister said it was sheer cowardice for some so-called former fighters to hide behind the youths in pursuance of their nefarious activities.
“Don’t think that you can come here and threaten me uchitaura papress conference. We know there are some fake war veterans sending them, but real war veterans come to us as ministers,” Zhuwao said at the poorly-attended launch of a $10 million empowerment fund yesterday.
“If you are daring enough, come and I will deal with you. If we analyse what Mr (Tonderai) Chidawa said, he alleges that Zhuwao has ruinous indigenisation policies. We will go ahead with indigenisation. Who are you to talk about indigenisation? A sell-out who was sent by the whites,” he said, adding he was ready to take some of these elements head on.
“You cannot… tarnish the image of war veterans. They are our allies as they gave us these jobs we occupy. Who are you to tell me that I cannot visit the Heroes Acre when my mother Sabina is buried there? If you are being sent by someone go back and tell them to come to me personally and we will deal with their issues.”
Zhuwao’s tirade came after ZYAP savaged him, his Local Government counterpart Saviour Kasukuwere, Jonathan Moyo and Philip Chiyangwa for allegedly causing divisions in Mugabe’s Zanu PF through a variety of actions.
In particular, Chidawa’s group says the youthful minister’s pursuance of ruinous economic policies such as a 10 percent indigenisation tax would deter foreign investments, but an unfazed Zhuwao said he was ready for the ultimate combat with the youths’ backers, including the faceless war veterans and their lackeys.
Crucially, ZYAP said the former Zvimba North legislator must not be allowed to lay his hands on the new fund until his friends, including Kasukuwere, fully explain how previous funds such as the Old Mutual-CABS one was distributed.
On the other hand, Moyo, Kasukuwere and Chiyangwa were fanning divisions by attacking war veterans, and social media messages.
“It defies logic… that on top of the 51 percent ownership matrix provided by IEEA, Cde Zhuwao insists on molesting investors by requiring them to pay 10 percent taxation,” Chidawa’s said earlier this week, adding the prescribed measures were “an affront to ZimAsset and would compound, if not cloud, clarity in terms of the country’s investment policies”.
However, a defiant Zhuwao said he would press ahead with his stated plans and went on to warn foreign-owned companies not to interfere or meddle in Zimbabwe’s political affairs.
“Indigenisation will go ahead and those who do not want to be indigenised will pay the empowerment tax. Don’t… threaten me,” he said, adding that any suggestions to him should “not be confrontational and through third parties”.
Even, though, Kasukuwere was the first to call war veterans a bunch of drunkards, First Lady Grace Mugabe has upped the ante by saying this group had no claim to special privileges.dailynews