HomeNewsWe won’t be silenced: Gumbo

We won’t be silenced: Gumbo


A ZANU PF cliqué fronted by disgraced former Vice-President Joice Mujuru yesterday hit back at President Robert Mugabe and declared that their camp would not be silenced by the veteran politician’s recent vitriolic attacks on former secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa.


The faction’s pointman and former Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo told NewsDay that Mugabe’s unrestrained verbal attack on Mutasa at Harare International Airport on Thursday would not deter them from demanding democracy and accountability in the ruling party.

“We have a legacy of fighting for freedom and bringing the one-man-one-vote principle to the country and that is what we should preserve for the future generations, not this culture of castigating fellow comrades just to stay in power,” Gumbo said.

“We don’t want high positions in the party and neither do we want to oust anyone. What we are simply demanding is accountability, democracy and transparency in our party and, therefore, we stand by the statement that was made by Mutasa,” he said, describing his expulsion from Zanu PF last month as a legal nullity.

“Nobody can just come and fire me from Zanu PF. It is our party, it belongs to the people. Those who think they can just sit and fire us are lying to themselves,” he said.

Two weeks ago, Mutasa angered the Zanu PF faction loyal to Mugabe and Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa after writing a hard-hitting statement claiming the party congress held in December was null and void as it was unconstitutional and marred by intimidation and victimisation.

The statement has irked Mugabe loyalists who are now calling
for Mutasa’s expulsion from the party.

Addressing thousands of Zanu PF supporters after touching down at Harare International Airport on Thursday from a five-week-long holiday in the Far East, Mugabe dressed down Mutasa, describing him as a “stray braying ass who cannot be corrected”.

Mugabe threatened to fire more people opposed to his rule as the purge against Mujuru loyalists continues.

But Gumbo yesterday insisted that Mugabe’s scathing attack on Mutasa would not change his group’s position that the Zanu PF December congress was unconstitutional.

The defiant Gumbo said while Mugabe could say whatever he wanted about Mutasa under the cover of freedom of speech as enshrined in the Constitution, it was also Mutasa’s democratic right to express his group’s views.

“He (Mugabe) has a right to freedom of speech which is in the Constitution to say what he wants, but so does Mutasa whose statement we fully support and stand by,” Gumbo said.

He added: “Our fight is not against individuals nor is it for personal aggrandisement, but it is a position of justice and we want our party to uphold the constitution which the party wrote by itself. As long as that has not been addressed, the fight will continue.”

Mutasa could not be reached for comment on his mobile phone.

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