Zimbabwe: Mugabe Backs Wife's Mujuru Allegations, Warns Deputy

Photo: Nehanda Radio President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace. Photo: Nehanda Radio
President Robert Mugabe and his wife Grace.[/caption] President Robert Mugabe on Tuesday effectively backed allegations by his wife that Joice Mujuru was plotting to force him out of power because he is too old and told his impatient lieutenant that “handina kwandinoenda” (I’m not going anywhere). Divisions in the ruling Zanu PF party over its 90-year-old leader’s succession have worsened lately ahead of what could be a defining elective congress in December with Grace Mugabe fuelling the fires by telling Mujuru to resign. Analysts however said Mugabe has only himself to blame for the current chaos after refusing advice to follow the relatively smooth succession examples set by fellow liberation movements in countries such as Mozambique, Namibia and Tanzania. In addition, they said Mugabe must take responsibility and put out the fires he started by foisting Mujuru on the party and country as vice president in 2004. Grace, nominated for as new head of the Zanu PF women’s league, recently held nationwide rallies where she attacked Mujuru, accusing her of running extortion rackets and engaging in illegal diamond dealing. More significantly however, the First Lady claimed that Mujuru was planning to force her husband out at Zanu PF’s December congress. Mujuru, now 59, secured Mugabe’s support for the vice-presidency in 2004 ahead of current justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa who had been nominated by eight of Zanu PF’s ten provincial structures. For several years the front-runner to take over from Mugabe ahead of Mnangagwa, Mujuru now appears to have lost favour with the First Family. At the centre of her troubles is the alleged existence (and in the hands of her party rivals) of a tape where she is said to have been recorded making remarks neither loyal nor complementary about the country’s cling-on president and his wife. Mujuru has not directly responded to Grace’s allegations but denied plotting a power grab, telling supporters Sunday that “Like any human being I have my own weaknesses, but people should not make false claims about me.” Still, Mugabe appeared to back his wife’s allegations Tuesday as he addressed a luncheon hosted by the local government ministry to mark the opening of the Second Session of the Eighth Parliament. Said the veteran leader: “If people are tired, hanzi Vamugabe vachembere ngavaende, haa! (Some are saying Mugabe is old and he must go). “Akasvitsa party pairi apa ndiani? Kwandakabva nemaBhunu, majeri, masango ndozonzi nekamwana kadikiwozvako kuti ibva? Aiwa! (Who made this party what it is today? After what I went through against the whites, the prisons, the bush only to be told by a young person that I should go? No!) “When time comes (to step down) I shall tell you, but for now hakuna kwandinoenda (I am going nowhere).” To thundering applause from the guests, Mugabe continued: “I know those who are saying Mugabe is old are working with the Americans. “They are saying he is the one blocking us from getting money from them. What has that gotten into your stinking head?! “After all these years of suffering and you sell out just like that! All this oppression you have not learnt that those (Americans) will never be friends with you. “They will give little pieces of money for your freedom.”

Stop the nonsense Regarding the scheming for positions at the December meeting, he said: “Some war is going on in my party. “When we had these parties (Zapu and Zanu) we never campaigned for positions. You are going to go into that position; yes, I will work in that position. You go into this position, yes. “(But now people are saying) now I am going to use this position to achieve A, B, C, D which has to do with pushing others out. “Planning, planning, planning dirty tricks against others all the time … have you succeeded in the post you are currently holding for you to aspire a bigger post? “It’s wasting our time; we should be in the field working so that when we go to congress, we must go and see how we can be more effective in our practical programmes and not to see who and who I shall push out and where and where I shall go.” The December congress must put an end to all the “nonsense” currently bedevilling the party, he declared. “Zanu PF as a party, I can assure you is a solid party, we won’t allow that nonsense. No rubbish will happen at congress,” he warned hitting the podium. “We get to Congress, we want to stop all that nonsense!” Tsholotsho saga However an analyst who asked not to be named because of his close ties with the ruling party said Mugabe has only himself to blame for the current problems.
He said: “Mugabe was once asked why he could not be like (Tanzania’s) Julius Nyerere who managed the transition smoothly and he said Nyerere is Nyerere, Robert Mugabe is Robert Mugabe. “(In Namibia) Sam Nujoma managed the transition using the Nyerere way and we can only lick our chaos in envy. Similarly, Mozambique’s Frelimo, with all the hard liners there, has managed their transitions seamlessly since the death of Samora Machel.” Mugabe also worsened the situation with his response to the 2005 Tsholotsho saga when an attempt was made to facilitate a managed transition. “The genesis of the chaos we have now is that that Mugabe listened to the gossip and lies about Tsholotsho which he was fed by Joseph Msika and John Nkomo,” said the analyst. “Instead of telling Oppah Muchinguri to put out the fires started by Grace, the President should take responsibility in putting out the fires he caused by not dealing with the transition like Nyerere, Swapo and Frelimo. “Secondly, he should take responsibility and put out the fires he started by making Joice Mujuru vice president on the basis of lies told by Msika and John Nkomo.” *Source allafrica]]>

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