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Zanu PF faction fights intensify

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ZANU PF faction fights have cascaded to the party’s grassroots structures amid reports that some district chairpersons are being summoned to meetings in secluded areas.

Staff Reporter

Sources said in one of the cases, two buses left Tongogara growth point in Shurugwi on Monday morning carrying 54 district chairpersons for a meeting in Harare.

Some Zanu PF members in Shurugwi said the meeting was unconstitutional and in violation of the recent politburo resolution which prohibits canvassing before the December congress.

“The meeting is not procedural and out of step with party regulations and the constitution. Worse still, when we have central committee elections around the corner and such actions are tantamount to vote-buying and not fair to other contestants who should have access to the same delegates in their respective districts,” said a senior Zanu PF member in Shurugwi.

Sources said the district chairpersons were drawn from Francis Nhema’s Shurugwi North constituency and Tapiwa Matangaidze’s Shurugwi South.

Matangaidze is aligned to Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa’s faction, while Nhema has been linked to the rival one reportedly loyal to Vice-President Joice Mujuru.

However, Nhema yesterday said he was not aware of the meeting.

“I am not aware of this meeting. I know that workshops are held, but I am not aware of this particular meeting that you are talking about,” he said.
But Edmund Mukaratigwa, who co-ordinated the trip, confirmed the Harare meeting.

However, he said the meeting had nothing to do with the forthcoming Zanu PF elective congress or central committee elections.

“This is not a meeting, but a workshop basically about enterprises, self-sustenance and poverty eradication in communities,” said Mukaratigwa, who lost to Matangaidze in the Zanu PF primaries ahead of the July 31 elections last year.

He said the meeting was convened in Harare — 350km away from Shurugwi — after taking into consideration the proximity of the venue to the facilitators.
“We have considered the availability of workshop trainers in Harare. It is difficult to get trainers in Shurugwi, hence the decision to come to Harare,” said Mukaratigwa.

But some Zanu PF members in Shurugwi queried the composition of the participants who were Zanu PF district chairpersons. They also questioned the manner in which the participants were selected.

“Some of the chairpersons were in a quandary as to attend the meeting, but were compelled to do so by Nhema’s allies (names withheld) and a civil servant in the Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment ministry,” said a source.

Zanu PF in its recent politburo meeting resolved that senior party members should not campaign ahead of the party’s December congress.

Cracks along factional lines are widening in Shurugwi — home to revered liberation hero Josiah Magama Tongogara — following reports that members from the party’s rudimentary structures were always at loggerheads.

Clashes between members of the two factions have become the order of the day at various political forums in the district. Those belonging to the Mnangagwa faction have been labelled Magwembure.

Efforts to contact Matangaidze were fruitless yesterday.

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