Two Zapu members were injured during skirmishes at the party’s offices in the city centre on Wednesday as divisions within the party widen.
Police have since made arrests in the matter but no official comment could be obtained from the police by the time of going to press.
However Zapu interim chairman Dumiso Dabengwa confirmed the skirmishes Friday.
“I can confirm that two of our party members injured each other. They had a misunderstanding and one of them had a weapon (axe) but he was disarmed by the other member and struck on the head. They were both taken to hospital where they were treated and discharged. One of them received stitches on the head,”Dabengwa said.
“Even though I visited the offices to find out what had happened, I can not give you any details as the provincial committee is looking into the matter. I must stress that as a party, we do not want violence of any form, people should sit down and talk,” he said.
The official who was struck with an axe on the head has been identified as Edward Nare, a former Zanu PF administrator for Bulawayo province.
A source in the party said: “A group of youths confronted Nare over his interference in the party’s branch structures and the argument degenerated into a fight. Apparently, there was an axe that someone had left at the office and Nare picked it and tried to go after the youths, who ran out of the office but managed to disarm him. One of them struck Nare on the head using the same axe.’’
Nare could not be contacted for comment.
The source said Nare and a female colleague, who is a former Zanu PF provincial executive member, are accused of trying to create parallel structures in the run-up to Zapu’s congress scheduled for August 27 to 30 at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair grounds.
“There is bad blood between youths and some former Zanu PF officials who are seemingly trying to re-create Zanu PF in our party. The leaders should have reined in the former Zanu PF officials a long time ago,’’ said the source.
Meanwhile, Dabengwa has said nominations for leadership positions could still come from the floor during the party’s congress.
“It does not mean that if you are nominated in the run-up to the congress, you are automatically the leader,” he said.
“Nominations can come from the floor during congress itself. The story that came out had given the false impression that if you are nominated by all the provinces before congress, you will automatically become the leader, yet nominations can come from the floor.”