ZANU PF kicks-starts Mugabe endorsement and Mnangagwa demotion
Harare – The Zanu-PF Youth League is meeting today in Harare that will be followed by the Women’s League conference is set to discuss muted calls for party extraordinary conference that will depose Vice-President Mnangagwa, sources said.
President Mugabe will address his loyalists attending the party conference today
The Zanu PF women’s and youth leagues are plotting to have Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa pushed out through this year’s congress which they want to be elective, according to local media reports.
Sources says in the last few months the women’s league have been meeting in secrete with Grace Mugabe who is the wing’s boss. The source said President Mugabe who was away on treatment in Asia has been rushed back to lend his weight over deliberations of the party Youth meeting that will emerge with statement of his endorsement and calls for a woman Vice-President.
Grace is said to be fighting Mnangagwa, leader of the rival team Lacoste faction in Zanu PF, and the generals who are reportedly keen to have Mugabe replaced before the 2018 elections, from the G40 base.
“The secret meetings have already mapped out the strategy for the party conference scheduled for December and how to turn it into an extraordinary congress and these strategies are on the agendas of the on-going party gatherings,” the official was quoted as saying.
The plan for Mugabe family is to replace Vice-President Mnangagwa with President of the Senate of Zimbabwe Edna Madzongwe as a sub-plot strategy to secure Grace Mugabe ascendancy.
“We are going to discuss several issues and among them is the issue of the state of the party, issues to do with discipline, social issues and the economic situation in the party and the country,” he said.
“This is our first national assembly meeting for this year and we hope to have another one before the end of the year.
“This particular meeting was scheduled for the month end of August, but we have to postpone it due to other commitments.”
On the women quota in the presidium party youth chief Chipanga said: “We have not deliberated on that matter as the Youth League. Possibly, there might be individual members in the league who may have their personal views in that regard, but as the Youth League, we have not discussed it and it is not on our agenda. That issue was raised by the Women’s League during the Victoria Falls conference.”
There have been fears an even bigger despot could take over from Robert Mugabe as Zimbabwe’s president – his wife.
Grace Mugabe is being tipped to lead the country following the death of her 92-year-old husband, who is said to be critical health state.
But the possibility of the much younger Mrs Mugabe becoming president has worried human rights campaigners and Zimbabweans who fear her similar tyrannical ways.
She first appeared as a contender for the top job just over two years ago when she became head of her husband’s party Zanu-PF’s Women’s League.
And since then, she has been slowly removing any real challengers to her.
Her main opponent is Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who has been a close ally of Mugabe since he rose to power 36 years ago.
But according to Zimbabwean media, she is attempting to oust him already, telling her husband he is plotting against him.
This follows a successful scheme two years ago when she got rid of former Vice President Joice Mujuru, who she claimed was planning to kill her.
At the time, Mrs Mugabe said: “She [Joice] has been telling people that once Mugabe dies, she will draw me close to her, and my secretaries told me that she will drag me in the streets, with people laughing while my flesh sticks on the tarmac”.
“My secretaries told me that she will drag me in the streets, with people laughing while my flesh sticks on the tarmac”
She also supported the controversial land seizures in Zimbabwe that saw white farmers stripped of their property holdings.
But to most westerners, she is notable for her extravagant shopping trips, including blowing over £120,000 in Paris in 2002; all while her country was in the grip of a famine.
And she hit headlines again in 2009 when she attacked a British photographer who was taking pictures of her on a lavish spending spree in Hong Kong.
Richard Jones was left pouring with blood after she punched him 10 times with a diamond ring-clad fist.
One political rival said of her: “She is tenacious and determined; she is naïve and unpolished; she is feared and is known always to get what she wants.”