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Mutasa explodes

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ZANU PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa yesterday dismissed as “nonsense” claims by Zapu president Dumiso Dabengwa that the party was in a crisis to select a Vice-President after the death of John Nkomo.

Report by Nduduzo Tshuma

In a recent interview, Dabengwa said there was none among former PF Zapu members who was capable of succeeding the late Nkomo.

But Mutasa, in his trademark combative style, dismissed Dabengwa’s sentiments.
“That is nonsense,” Mutasa charged. “Tell him that. Tell him I said he is saying nonsense.”

Mutasa tried to contest for the post when Nkomo was elevated, but was brushed aside because the Unity Accord precludes officials from the old Zanu PF from contesting.

Zanu PF chairman Simon Khaya Moyo is a front runner to replace Nkomo although he is likely to face a challenge from the party’s economic affairs secretary, Obert Mpofu.
Senate Deputy President Naison Khutshwekhaya Ndlovu, the most senior surviving PF Zapu member, is a dark horse for the post.

It was agreed at the signing of the Unity Accord in 1987 that one of the Vice-Presidents will come from the former Zapu.

Sikhanyiso Ndlovu, a Zanu PF politburo member, declined to comment on the matter.
“How can I comment on something said by someone who is not in Zanu PF?
“I do not want to comment on that. Let the people conclude whether or not there are suitable candidates,” he said.

Nkomo died in January and Zanu PF is yet to open discussions on who will succeed him, although there are reports that tensions are running high.

Dabengwa’s comments come in the wake of rumours that he had been approached by some Zanu PF members who want him back in the party so he could assume the Vice-Presidency.

The Zapu leader denied that he had been approached, insisting that he was content leading his party. Dabengwa quit Zanu PF to join Simba Makoni’s Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn movement in 2008.

After the elections, he resuscitated Zapu, which he leads.

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