Jonathan Moyo Publicly Humiliates VP Mnangagwa
HARARE – Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo has added fuel to the factional fires raging in Zanu PF, provocatively mocking Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa and his supporters on social media as the ruling party’s leaders meet at what is expected to be an explosive politburo gathering in Harare today.
In a thinly-disguised attack on his Twitter account yesterday, Moyo roasted Mnangagwa and Team Lacoste — the Zanu PF faction rallying behind the VP’s mooted presidential aspirations — for turning to prophets in their alleged bid to irregularly take power in the warring ruling party.
“When their successionist project goes up in smoke, who are they gonna call? Fake prophets!,” Moyo tweeted after it had been reported that Mnangagwa was slated to be the guest of honour at controversial Malawian preacher Shepherd Bushiri’s “Black Billionaire” breakfast meeting in Harare tomorrow.
However, doubt was later cast on the advertised breakfast meeting after Bushiri disowned it yesterday.
But Bushiri had courted widespread scorn after he claimed that State Security minister Kembo Mohadi will soon be promoted, as the tribal and succession wars devouring Zanu PF become even more intractable — amid damaging public accusations and counter-accusations between the party’s two main factions.
Before Moyo’s latest provocation, both analysts and Zanu PF insiders had warned in interviews with the Daily News on Monday that feathers would fly when Team Lacoste comes face to face with the under-fire Generation 40 (G40) group — which is rabidly opposed to the Midlands godfather succeeding President Robert Mugabe — when they meet at the politburo today.
All this also came after Moyo had stunningly accused Mnangagwa and Team Lacoste of having captured key State institutions and masterminding his alleged ongoing “persecution” by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (Zacc), on charges of defrauding the Zimbabwe Manpower Development Fund (Zimdef).
Insiders say Moyo and other Zanu PF bigwigs such as Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko; Local Government minister and ruling party national political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere; and Indigenisation minister and Mugabe’s nephew, Patrick Zhuwao, are some of the G40’s kingpins.
Appearing in the Bushiri video that has gone viral, Mohadi — who Zanu PF insiders link to Team Lacoste — is seen being promised by the controversial Malawian preacher that he will soon be “crowned”, prompting some in the ruling party to surmise that he also has presidential ambitions.
Last year, Mnangagwa also courted ridicule after he visited popular local prophet Madzibaba Wimbo who disappointed the VP’s followers after claiming that the Midlands godfather needed help if he is to succeed Mugabe.
Mugabe has since set up a ministerial team to try and “rescue the abducted” prophet whose real name is Aaron Mhukuta — and thus far the team has failed in its mission.
Wimbo, some of his family members claim, was allegedly taken against his will by senior army officials allegedly pushing for Mnangagwa to succeed Mugabe, in a bid to force a succession prophecy by the frail 94-year-old prophet.
The prophet, who leads the secretive Johane Masowe Vadzidzi Vajesu apostolic sect, is popular for prophesying in 1957 that a person named after angel Gabriel would become Zimbabwe’s president.
While there is no documented evidence to prove the enigmatic Wimbo’s prophecy, it allegedly came to pass after Mugabe — whose second name is Gabriel — came to lead independent Zimbabwe.
So deep is the belief in mystic powers within the top echelons of Zanu PF that former vice president and now Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) leader Joice Mujuru was expelled from the ruling party in 2014 on untested allegations that included plotting to kill Mugabe and using black magic and voodoo to get rid of the nonagenarian.
Zanu PF insiders told the Daily News yesterday that this strong belief in witchdoctors and so-called prophets had seen many traditional healers and preachers becoming very rich from their association with the ruling elite.
“The chefs (top Zanu PF officials) are always surreptitiously visiting n’angas and prophets to keep their posts and grow their wealth,” one party bigwig claimed.
In an earlier hard-hitting statement last week, Moyo also accused Zacc of being a vehicle for the furtherance of factional agendas, specifically Mnangagwa’s alleged bid to succeed Mugabe.
“On their own admission, as subsequently confirmed by Mnangagwa, Zacc in circumstances that are unclear met with . . . Mnangagwa at least twice to discuss allegations that Zacc was putting together in relation to me.
“After these meetings with the vice president, commissioner Goodson Nguni claimed to various persons that the vice president communicated to them that my arrest had been cleared (ostensibly by Mugabe) when this in fact was not true,” he said.
Moyo added, “I have learnt and it has been established that these meetings with the vice president are not meetings provided for by the law, and were intended to secure that the political ends currently being pursued by the vice president are advanced in relation to what has become public knowledge about the desire to secure a front foot in succession politics”.
The former Zanu PF spin-doctor also said his current legal and political woes were allegedly a part of Mnangagwa’s grand scheme to smear his reputation as a minister, MP and politburo member.
“It is clear from Zacc’s own records that the decision to effect my arrest was taken at the vice president’s office and subsequently rubber-stamped if at all by the commissioners,” he said, adding that such decisions were unlawful and open to challenge.
Meanwhile, Kasukuwere also says it’s now time to speak openly about the deadly tribal, factional and succession wars ravaging the ruling party.
Addressing a Zanu PF rally in the Harare small dormitory town of Epworth on Sunday, Kasukuwere also made the startling claim that some ruling party bigwigs who are angling to take over from Mugabe wished death upon the increasingly frail nonagenarian.
Party insiders at the rally told the Daily News that the shocking claim was “the beginning of the public outing of Team Lacoste”, the Zanu PF faction that is rallying behind Mnangagwa’s mooted presidential aspirations.
“Despite the fact that people voted for . . . Mugabe in 2013 and the party declared that he is our 2018 candidate . . . there are some among us who are now losing sleep each time mudhara (Mugabe) goes out of the country inquiring whether he is still alive or not.
“Is that politics to wish others dead so that you can assume power? Isn’t it that you have to work for the people to get to the top?” Kasukuwere asked cryptically.
“However, he is not dying anytime soon. He will be there even to bury some of you and some of us will not be moved from the position that we have taken to let him rule forever,” he added.
Turning to the damning allegations that he has engaged in corrupt land deals involving the issuance of residential stands to Zanu PF youths, Kasukuwere also accused his foes of using the land issue and abusing State institutions to fight him.
“I will face my accusers head-on. Let those who are saying and writing what they want do so. But be warned, I am ready for you.
“Now they are using State institutions such as the police and Zacc to fight a political war. But we know what you are up to. I am in politics for life, not for the short term. This is our game,” he said.
Kasukuwere also suggested that Mnangagwa’s allies had sabotaged Zanu PF in the Norton by-election which was stunningly won by independent candidate Temba Mliswa.
“They (Team Lacoste) did what they did in Norton vachirovera bhora musango (they sabotaged Zanu PF), only to blame me saying I rigged the primary elections. How is that so?
“I am a national political commissar and how do I interfere with the selection of candidates? People made their choice and you sabotaged them and we are aware of that,” he said.