Zapu president Dumiso Dabengwa on Tuesday dismissed claims by former Zipra chief of staff Retired Brigadier General Ambrose Mutinhiri that he was ready to rejoin Zanu PF.
Mutinhiri made the allegations in an interview published by the State media on Sunday.
The former minister was quoted as saying Dabengwa was not prepared to work with someone who did not have liberation war credentials, a stance interpreted as a snub on Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai.
But the former Zipra intelligence supremo told NewsDay in an exclusive interview that it was Mutinhiri who had actually asked him to rejoin Zanu PF.
“The fact of the matter is I had gone to meet a friend, an ex-Zanla combatant, over something else and while we were there, we then entered into a political discussion,” Dabengwa said.
“I had gone there to meet him over something different. But afterwards we engaged in a discussion and I asked them why they were just sitting and doing nothing, was it because they did not realise that their party was falling apart?
“It was him (Mutinhiri) who said they needed people like me to come back.
“I did not confide in him. We were discussing. I did not confide anything in him and then I said to him after what happened there is no way I could come back to Zanu PF.
“If we would ever have any working relationship with Zanu PF, it would be on a completely different angle, and not through that Unity Accord.
“That Unity Accord as far as we are concerned is not existent anymore.
“I did not even say we need to amend, but I said it’s non-existent.”
In 2009, Dabengwa led Zapu members who walked out of the 1987 Unity Accord with Zanu PF, citing unfulfilled promises.
The agreement ended the Gukurahundi killings in Matabeleland and Midlands, which started soon after independence.
Dabengwa said he told Mutinhiri that they had tried to make the agreement work but original Zanu PF leaders refused to co-operate.
“I told them that the people in Zanu PF had made a decision that no one in Zapu can ever lead the party let alone the country, and for that reason we can never go back,” he said.
“But politics being what it is, if it turns out that we find ourselves after the elections having to work with Zanu PF, we would certainly work on a completely different arrangement, that is what I said.
“I did not talk about wanting to work with them. The use of the word ‘confiding’ is completely misplaced.”
Dabengwa also dismissed claims that he had said he would never work with Tsvangirai.
In the interview, Mutinhiri alleged that he was not happy with the way he was treated by Zapu soon after independence, saying he was left out in the cold only to be rescued by President Robert Mugabe.
He also spoke about his ambitions to become Vice-President taking advantage of the departure of senior leaders such as Dabengwa from the party.