ZANU PF officials in Mashonaland East province have reportedly launched a spirited campaign to strip Marondera Central legislator Ray Kaukonde and Goromonzi South MP Petronella Kagonye of their parliamentary seats, accusing them of belonging to a rival faction fronted by former Vice-President Joice Mujuru.
by Jairos Saunyama
Both Kaukonde (former Provincial Affairs minister) and Kagonye (former Transport deputy minister) recently lost their government posts over the same allegations.
Party sources said the campaign was being led by war veterans.
Two weeks ago, Zanu PF threatened to recall Headlands MP Didymus Mutasa and Hurungwe West MP Themba Mliswa who were fired from the party over related allegations.
“The province is pushing for the recall of Kaukonde and Kagonye for they are facing serious allegations against the First Family and the party. Kaukonde was Mujuru’s right-hand man who was the facilitator of factionalism,” a Zanu PF insider said.
“First Lady Grace Mugabe said it in front of him at Rudhaka (Stadium) during the ‘Meet the People’ tour rallies where she revealed that Kaukonde was the one funding factionalism and extorting money from investors on behalf of Mujuru.
“As for Kagonye, she is being accused of massive illegal land dealings in her constituency. She is also a sidekick of Kaukonde who spared a number of farms owned by the whites.
“The problem for now is that the province is being run by an interim executive, but once a new leadership is in place, both Kaukonde and Kagonye’s cases will be dealt with,” the source said.
The source added that the party members and electorate were angry over Kaukonde’s long absence from the constituency since he was stripped of his government and party posts three months ago.
“Since he was removed from the provincial headquarters offices, Kaukonde has not set foot in Marondera Central constituency. In other words, party officials and the electorate are saying he has abandoned his constituency and must be replaced.”