HomeNewsMliswa labels rivals ‘gay gangsters’

Mliswa labels rivals ‘gay gangsters’

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THE raging Zanu PF factional fights ahead of the December elective congress have turned into a mudslinging match with senior party officials publicly labelling each other as “spies” and “gay gangsters”.

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This comes as party spokesperson Rugare Gumbo has warned party members to stop campaigning until after tomorrow’s politburo meeting to endorse the election guidelines.

Serious fights along factional lines reached another peak this week with Mashonaland West provincial chairman Temba Mliswa dressing down Information minister Jonathan Moyo and calling him all sorts of names after the latter labelled the Hurungwe West MP an agent of the United States’ secret service, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

Addressing a Press conference in the capital yesterday, Mliswa claimed that the ruling party had been infiltrated by CIA agents and “gay gangsters”, some of whom were Cabinet ministers.

“I spoke about sexual orientation. CIA is a bunch of gay gangsters and you can’t be part of them if you are not one of them.

“We belong to a party led by a leader who is constitutional, but we wonder: Has the party been hijacked?” he said.

He said, in apparent reference to Moyo, it was surprising why a person who previously publicly attacked President Robert Mugabe and campaigned for the Zanu PF leader to step down had been forgiven and appointed into Cabinet despite losing in last year’s harmonised elections.

“The party did it because some of us were not in positions of authority. There is the central committee, the politburo reports to the central committee. We are the ones who hold the politburo accountable. They [politburo] are meeting, but not reporting back to central committee in violation of the constitution,” he said.

“He [Mugabe] is procedural. He has run the party well. He has said to the central committee, ‘you must be at work and hold us accountable’. My response is, ‘it’s just infiltration in the party’. I will prove it, I will take it upon myself and say this is a bunch of gay gangsters. It’s a whole crew and we will not allow the party to be run by gay gangsters. I am saying to the President that we can’t go to congress with gay gangsters.”

Mliswa said he supported the top hierarchy elected in the last congress, namely Mugabe, Vice-President Joice Mujuru and national chairman Simon Khaya Moyo.

As lobbying for seats reaches fever-pitch, Masvingo Provincial Affairs minister Kudakwashe Bhasikiti over the weekend lobbied the province to retain Mujuru and vote Khaya Moyo as chairman at the congress.

“Are we together as Mwenezi to say Vice-President Mujuru should retain her position? Show by raising your fists. Who doesn’t want the current presidium to remain as it is? Who doesn’t want the First Lady?” asked Bhasikiti.

“We also echoed our support for First Lady Grace Mugabe because she is strategic and can defuse factionalism in the party. She is a unifier and catering for everyone,” Bhasikiti said.

Youths in other provinces are lobbying for Grace to set her sights “higher” and be the next vice-president of the party and this has been viewed as a call for her to challenge Mujuru.

Gokwe-Nembudziya MP Justice Mayor Wadyajena said Grace should aim higher and lead not only women in Zanu PF, but everyone.

“We want to say Dr Mugabe should not end there. She must aim higher. She must rise and rise. As youths, we want her to rise. If she represents women only, who will represent the others?” Wadyajena said.

Newly-elected Zanu PF Youth League deputy secretary for youth affairs Kudzai Chipanga said members who fanned factionalism in the party should stop that and rally behind Mugabe.

“I made declarations that we support President Mugabe only and no one else. We have problems with youths hiding behind factions and I read the riot act and said we don’t want to hear about youths who are engaged in factional fights and say I am from the Mujuru faction or Mnangagwa faction.

“We reaffirmed the nomination of First Lady Grace Mugabe for the post of Women’s League boss. We emphasised the issue of discipline. Indiscipline and factionalism are posing a threat to the party. As a vanguard of the party, it’s our duty and responsibility to safeguard the party and that we will not involve ourselves in factionalism,” Chipanga said.

Meanwhile, Gumbo yesterday ordered all party members to desist from campaigning until after adoption of election guidelines tomorrow.

“The politburo will meet to come up with a position and guidelines to be followed when choosing the VP and the national chairperson. For now, there is no position because this has not been on the agenda in our politburo meetings,” Gumbo said.

He added: “As I have indicated, the guidelines have not been set out and in the spirit of unity and harmony in the party, it will not be proper for party members to launch campaigns denouncing each other in the media. The party has rules and regulations and disciplined party members should wait for the guidelines.”

Khaya Moyo is widely tipped to land the second vice-presidency, although some of his ex-Zapu colleagues, such as Naison Khutshwekhaya Ndlovu, Phelekezela Mphoko, Home Affairs minister Kembo Mohadi and Retired Brigadier Ambrose Mutinhiri, have also expressed interest in the same post.

War veterans’ leader Jabulani Sibanda has been touted as a candidate for the chairperson’s position by some ex-Zapu members in Matabeleland provinces, while Manicaland and Masvingo are pushing for secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa.

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