12 November 2017

Zimbabwe: Zanu-PF Circus Continues As Chinamasa Forced to Plot Own Ouster

Photo: The Herald
Vice President Mphoko, former finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa and former vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa (file photo).

The farcical Zanu PF infighting reached comical proportions weekend when party secretary for legal affairs, Patrick Chinamasa was tasked to organise processes that will also lead to his own ouster.

Chinamasa, as party legal affairs secretary, also chairs the National Disciplinary Committee.

The Cyber Security Minister and Manicaland provincial executive member is among more than 100 Zanu PF bigwigs identified for suspension and possible expulsion for allegedly belonging to axed Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa's camp.

Mnangagwa was fired a week ago by President Robert Mugabe on alleged disloyalty.

He was being accused of putting up an elaborate plot to seize control of key State institutions strategic to his presidential ambitions as well as creating another centre of power running parallel to that of Mugabe.

As he took the walk of shame, probably into political oblivion, his allies find themselves facing the same fate with party provinces recommending their ouster.

Of these, Chinamasa's name features prominently.

A Zanu PF politburo meeting last week declined to go the way of summary expulsions on its under-fire provincial executives, putting their fate in the hands of a party disciplinary committee.

But of the lot, one man who has been asked to lay down systems to crucify his comrades and himself is Chinamasa.

Zanu PF spokesperson Simon Khaya Moyo confirmed the circus.

"The matter was raised in the politburo and the Secretary for Legal Affairs (Chinamasa) was tasked with dealing with the issue.

"We are all guided by the party constitution. The Secretary for Legal Affairs interprets the constitution and he is handling the matter as we speak. The matter is now in the department's hands and we will be advised accordingly," he told State media weekend.

Khaya-Moyo did not state exactly how Chinamasa will handle the invidious task but predicted the former Finance Minister may find it in him to recuse himself.

"The disciplinary committee is not a one-man band, they will handle the matter as a committee and I think one can be recused if needs be," he said.

Zanu PF's internecine fights are linked to 93-year-old President Mugabe's bid to remove all possible obstacles for his wife, Grace's bid to take over as VP and possibly, the country's presidency.

Mnangagwa, who until the past few months was viewed a Mugabe's heir apparent, was singled out as the biggest stumbling block to the controversial move to elevate the first lady to the country's most powerful job.

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