THE Zanu PF faction believed to be led by Vice-President (VP) Joice Mujuru appears to be gaining more ground in Zanu PF’s intricate succession battle.
REPORT BY JOHN NYASHANU
The VP appeared to be tightening her grip on power following yesterday’s victory by Luke Mushore, believed to belong to her faction, in the Mashonaland Central elections for the provincial chairmanship.
Mushore polled 12 905 votes beating former chairman Dick Mafios who garnered 12 424 votes to land the party’s top post in the province where Mujuru hails from.
Announcing the results at a Press conference in Harare yesterday, Zanu PF national spokesperson Rugare Gumbo called on all party contestants to accept the outcome, amid reports that other losing candidates in the Midlands and Manicaland province where other alleged Mujuru allies Jason Machaya and John Mvundura romped to victory last week were challenging the results.
“The party and President (Robert Mugabe) made it clear that elections in Midlands and Manicaland are behind us. People must learn to accept defeat . . . They (losers) want power and to have it at any cost which is not possible,” Gumbo said.
In the Midlands race, Machaya defeated Larry Mavhima, widely believed to be a close ally of Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, leader of the other Zanu PF faction.
In Manicaland, Mvundura won the Manicaland provincial chair last week, after Monica Mutsvangwa, believed to be from the Mnangagwa camp withdrew from the race, citing numerous electoral irregularities.
Gumbo said elections for Harare, Bulawayo, Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West, Masvingo, Matabeleland North and Matabeleland South would be held on the weekend of November 23 and 24.
Already, Mnangagwa appears to have been dealt a heavy blow in Masvingo where his suspected ally and incumbent chairperson Lovemore Matuke was recently suspended for giving former Reserve Bank adviser Munyaradzi Kereke the greenlight to contest in the parliamentary elections on a Zanu PF ticket ahead of the party’s preferred candidate, Elias Musakwa.
Gumbo confirmed Matuke was unlikely to contest as he remained suspended.
He nevertheless refuted allegations of deep-rooted factionalism in Zanu PF, insisting the party was united.
“There are no divisions within the party. We have a hierarchy comprising President Mugabe as leader, Vice-President Mujuru, national chairman Simon Khaya-Moyo and secretary for administration Cde Didymus Mutasa and we all follow their directions,” he said.