Mugabe nephew raises alarm

President Mugabe President Mugabe[/caption] President Robert Mugabe’s nephew, Patrick Zhuwao has raised alarm over a possible palace coup within Zanu PF if the party’s factional fights are not put in check. The 47-year-old Zhuwao claimed in an opinion piece that appeared in the State media last weekend that factional fights in Zanu PF had reached unprecedented levels and were now a destabilising factor Zanu PF is currently divided along factional lines, one believed to be led by Vice President Joice Mujuru and another by Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa. Both deny leading the factions angling to take over from 90-year-old Mugabe. “…I submit that factionalism has evolved within Zanu PF to a point where it can be viewed as a palace coup in the making,” Zhuwao said. A nephew to Mugabe who holds a degree in computer engineering and runs a highly successful and mechanised Norton-based tobacco farm, Zhuwao said Zanu PF factions were eager to position a particular person in power, adding that the main focus will be on securing sufficient support to influence the outcome of forthcoming elective processes that determine the representatives of members. Zanu PF is hurtling towards an elective congress in December that is due to re-organise the composition of the presidium. “Factions within Zanu PF have, therefore become a confluence of several individual personal ambitions and egos,” said Zhuwao, who also runs a policy think-tank dubbed “Zhuwao Institute” that develops strategic plans and actions aimed at empowering Zimbabwean society. “In the case of Zanu PF, factions strengthened soon after the 2005 elections when the party won a two thirds constitutional majority. Within 36 months, factions had effectively dismantled the Zanu PF government such that the country had to endure five years of a disastrous inclusive government. “Factional strife and conflict have a tendency of becoming so intense and public that the party tends to suffer from perceptions of disunity. Such perceptions of disunity eventually turn to be self-fulfilling where factional members seek to act and think differently from the rest of the party. This forms the origins and basis which affects business confidence and operations.” He warned that factional conflict and strife can escalate to levels that may cause fissures in the organisation that, in turn, may cause ruptures. He said this would lead to the party failing to operate effectively and putting it in danger of breaking up. “In 2008, factionalism within Zanu PF led to the emergence of Simba Makoni as one of the presidential contestants,” Zhuwao said. A former Zanu PF Politburo member, Simba Makoni garnered eight percent of the vote in the March 2008 presidential election after walking out on the party. [caption id="attachment_12092" align="alignright" width="100"]Patrick Zhuwao Patrick Zhuwao[/caption] He subsequently formed his Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn party which entered an electoral pact with Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC ahead of last year’s election. Said Zhuwao: “As could be seen from the emergence of the Mavambo group, factional operations are usually conducted in secret and within minimal public scrutiny. This cloak of secrecy unfortunately leads to widespread incidences of unethical behaviour.” In thinly veiled remarks targeted at Zanu PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa and political commissar Webster Shamu, Zhuwao claimed the glitches experienced at last month’s sixth Zanu PF youth conference could have been a planned move. Mutasa and Shamu, who are believed to be aligned to the Mujuru faction were accused of rigging the shambolic youth league elections. The chaos, which also caught the ire of Mugabe, came about after the party failed to raise money to fund party activities, including the youth conference. “Such behaviour includes the vote-buying that was widespread during the sixth Zanu PF youth conference,” Zhuwao said. “Some observers have suggested that the level of disorganisation experienced at the youth conference was engineered. “This view is supported by the fact that the national women’s conference that was held a few days later was run efficiently, by the same organisers,” he said. *Source dailynews]]>

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