CHIRUMANZU-ZIBAGWE — President Robert Mugabe has warned the judiciary against handling the court challenge against him and Zanu PF which was recently filed by fired former party secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa and ex-spokesperson Rugare Gumbo.
by BLESSED MHLANGA
Speaking at the official opening of the Africa Chrome Fields (ACF) chrome smelting plant in Zibagwe yesterday, Mugabe said the case brought by Mutasa and Gumbo should not be handled by the courts.
“If there is a magistrate or judge who will want to preside over this matter, then I would like to know where he/she went to school and where he/she got the powers to rule over Zanu PF,” amid cheers from the Zanu PF crowd.
“I will ask because this matter is not one for the courts. If we say we no longer want you in our party and want you to leave, is that a problem?”
Mugabe described Mutasa as “a fool who throws his money in the sea” hoping to reap rewards.
He said the former Presidential Affairs minister was supposed to approach the Zanu PF central committee and then Zanu PF congress to have his grievances solved and not the courts.
Mugabe said people were supposed to fear the party because it was a scary institution.
“Musangano wedu unozezesa (Our party evokes fear). So don’t worry about those who take the party to the courts,” he said.
“Courts are supposed to deal with other legal matters which are governed by our Constitution and not Zanu PF matters which have their own structures and how these matters need to be dealt with. It is shocking that a man who has been at the helm of the party in a very influential position and knows the party constitution can get this lost.”
Mugabe said Zanu PF matters could only be settled internally.
“If one is a fool and does not want to be corrected, all you have to do is leave him alone. He is a fool who throws his money in the seas hoping that it will multiply.
“We saw this happening with another church leader who was talking about miracle money, but he stopped it because he was warned that he would be arrested because money does not grow like that,” Mugabe said in apparent reference to self-proclaimed Prophet Uebert Angel.
Mugabe — who made an uncoordinated speech which lasted for nearly two hours jumping from one subject to another — as usual attacked former Vice-President Joice Mujuru as has become the norm in almost all his speeches.
He said Mujuru’s successor, Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa, was a disciplined cadre who deserved promotion.
“Leadership positions come only to those who are loyal and know how to follow the principles of the party, not those who want to use witchcraft to attain leadership positions. That will not work. They were fooled to try and remove the President just after we had won elections. They were told that it could happen. It can’t happen, you can’t remove me,” Mugabe said.
Mugabe, who had to support himself with the podium as he stood up to address the thousands of people who gathered at Chinyika Ranch, continuously referred to Provincial Minister of State Affairs Jason Machaya as the Zanu PF chairman for Midlands Province.
Machaya was fired from the post towards last year’s congress over alleged links to the Mujuru faction which is now referred to as Gamatox.
Currently Kizito Chivamba is the acting chairman.
ACF, owned by the non-listed South African Moti Group of companies, said it would invest $200 million in the chrome smelting project in the next 11 months and would employ a total of 600 workers at its peak.
The company will use new technology to smelt chrome ore in less than five minutes to produce high quality ultra-low carbon ferrochrome which will fetch around $2,85 per pound on the international market as opposed to the conventional method which uses electricity and takes over six hours to produce charge chrome which sells at 0,85c per pound.
ACF chief executive Zunaid Moti, of Indian origin, said the technology in use was exclusive to Zimbabwe and had never been used anywhere in the world.
Mugabe ordered Moti not to share the technology with Western countries, saying it should be used in Zimbabwe alone.