President Robert Mugabe has levelled a myriad of allegations against former vice-president Joice Mujuru in recent months with the latest being that she performed a semi-nude ritual whilst beheading chickens in a bid to kill him and her ‘detractors’.
NewsDay gives you a timeline of these allegations.
THE GRACE FACTOR
The fall of former vice-president Joice Mujuru began with First Lady Grace Mugabe’s dramatic entry into Zimbabwe’s turbulent political arena late last year.
Mujuru had been tipped as the person most likely to succeed President Robert Mugabe until Grace, launched an almost four-month campaign against her, branding her ‘Dr 10%’ and calling for her resignation.
In her continued decamapigning of then vice-president Joice Mujuru, Grace also described the Vice-President as corrupt, jealous and divisive.
October 16, 2014 at her Bindura Rally First Lady Grace Mugabe used the metaphor of ‘baby dumping’ to refer to what should be done to those that are leading factionalism in Zanu PF.
October 22, 2014 First Lady Grace Mugabe declined a handshake from then Vice President Joice Mujuru at the Harare International Airport in the wake of serious allegations of corruption, subversion and abuse of office levelled against the VP.
October 23, 2014 at Mazowe Orphanage (Meeting war vets) the First Lady claimed: “She wants to use money to topple Mugabe,” to which the crowd shouted: “Mai vakawora ivavo! Mabavha, mbavha (that woman is rotten. Thief, thief)!”
Grace also went on to say: “. . . there are plenty of people who can run this country, not Mujuru . . . we cannot go back to where we were before independence.”
October 25, 2014 Then Vice-president Joice Mujuru hosted her PhD graduation party at Dotito Government School in Mt Darwin. In apparent response to allegations levelled against her by the First Lady, Mujuru said she, like any other human being, had weaknesses, but should not be judged basing on what she has not done.
October 28, 2014 at the official opening of the Second Session of the Eighth Parliament MDC-T hecklers jeered at First Lady Grace Mugabe and poked fun at her controversially-awarded doctorate (PhD) while they cheered then VP Joice Mujuru.
Glen North MP Fani Munengami (MDC-T) shouted
“Vapinda Gushungo na Doctor Amai (Mugabe and Doctor Mother have entered), how is the doctorate?”
At the same event Mujuru sat next to then Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa.
October 30, 2014 Zanu PF supporters converged at the party headquarters prior to the crunch politburo meeting that was held on that day, to demonstrate against Jabulani Sibanda and Joice Mujuru.
People carried posters with messages denouncing Mai Mujuru with the crowd bursting into song, chanting “Zimuroyi, zimbuya repaDotito, zimuroyi… (witch, old woman from Dotito, witch)”
Then Zanu PF Secretary for Adminstration Didymus Mutasa was booed by the demonstrating supporters because he refused to chant “Pasi neGamatox!”
President Mugabe blasted those who were against Grace Mugabe’s rallies saying:
“Madzimai pachavo ndovakati toda kuti amai vatitungamirire, chakaipa chii (It is the women who said that they wanted Grace to lead them so what is the problem)?”
November 16, 2014 After months of silence then vice-president Joice Mujuru issued her first statement in which she said:
“I regret that certain persons have elected to make false, unsubstantiated, malicious, defamatory and irresponsible statements about me, solely for the purpose of engineering their wide spread publication in all forms of media across the world, and bringing the Ruling Party, Zanu PF (“the Party”), the Government and the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, into disrepute.”
November 17, 2014 at Mazowe Orphanage (Meeting collage students) Grace Mugabe said, “I trapped Mujuru and I now have recording of her in a mini-skirt, speaking ill of me and the president. We are tired of this stupidity, ngaaende izvozvi (she must leave now).”
Watch First Lady Grace Mugabe speaking below:
On her husband, she says, “Mugabe is a grandmaster and will have the last laugh.”
November 19, 2014 While meeting cross-border traders and vendors at her orphange in Mazowe Grace Mugabe reiterated her call for Mujuru to resign.
Hurungwe East MP Sarah Mahoka joined in saying Mujuru must leave office before the end of next week.
“The Women’s League national executive must remove VP Mujuru from office next week without fail.”
November 20, 2014 Mujuru remained as acting president while President Robert Mugabe travelled to Equatorial Guinea, only a day after First Lady Grace Mugabe reiterated calls that she must resign.
December 2 2014 President Robert Mugabe for the first time publicly attacks then Vice-President Joice Mujuru, describing her as having “simplistic thinking” for reportedly planning to oust him from the helm of the party and government.
“We are experiencing it for the first time in Zanu PF. . . And for that matter it’s a woman who says she wants to lead.”
December 7, 2014 Mujuru responded to the comments made by the President in a statement released on December 7. This was the second statement that Mujuru released since the launch of the onslaught against her.
“The allegations that I, alone, or (together with various distinguished Comrades) have sought to or attempted to remove His Excellency R G Mugabe from office are ridiculous. Earlier this year, in Chinhoyi, I had occasion to state publicly that the Zanu PF Party had been infiltrated by a group of persons with nefarious intent, whose objective is to destroy the Party from within. As a result of my objections to this agenda, I have become the fly in a web of lies whose final objective is the destruction of Zanu Pf and what it stands for and ultimately the present Government of H.E R G Mugabe.
On the allegations that she practices witchcraft Mujuru said:
“Where it not that the allegations of the practice of “witch craft “have been made in relation to a very serious matter, I would not have been concerned. Suffice to say that I am and have always been a God fearing person and would not and have not resorted to witchcraft to advance my political career.”
On the alleged assasination attempt of the President:
“The most repugnant allegation made recently has been that I sought to assassinate the President. My loyalty to His Excellency and my country Zimbabwe, is unquestionable. I would never be party to such an action or activity, alone or in a group.”
December 8 2014 President Robert Mugabe fires his deputy Joice Mujuru and eight ministers accused of being behind a plot to topple him from power.
In a statement read on his behalf President Robert Mugabe fired Joice Mujuru saying: ‘It had become evident that her conduct in the discharge of her duties had become inconsistent with the expected standard, exhibiting conflict between official responsibilities and private interests.’
He said he had evidence that Mujuru met with US officials, and in this meeting they plotted a plan to try and remove him from office.
February 27, 2015 In his televised interview broadcast on ZTV on the eve of his 91st birthday celebrations in Victoria Falls, Mugabe said he had wanted Mujuru’s alleged shenanigans to be exposed at the “right time”, but was surprised when Grace let the cat out of the bag during her ‘Meet The People Tours’ which were held a few months before the Zanu PF congress in December.
“At home we discuss politics and share ideas, but Grace started to talk about Amai Mujuru’s corrupt activities too early,”
February 28, 2015 At his birthday celebrations in Victoria Falls President Mugabe claimed that 10 chickens were slaughtered, each representing the person who Mujuru wanted to have killed, starting with him, his wife Grace, Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa and Local Government minister Ignatius Chombo, among others.
Mugabe also said that Mujuru performed the alleged rituals while “topless with breasts hanging”.
March 2, 2015 Mujuru hit back at President Robert Mugabe for labelling her a witch and dismissed the allegations as baseless and outright lies meant to divert attention from concentrating on national issues.
“I am at a loss as to how I continue to be the subject matter of Presidential conjecture and fantasy based on outright lies. I was born into the Apostolic faith and once at school, became a member of the Salvation Army. I am a committed Christian and was the leader of Apostolic Churches as patron, and I have been committed to Christian life and values, all of my life.
“It is disturbing that the allegations that I tried to or was part of a conspiracy to assassinate the President have now been reduced to allegations of witchcraft, whose versions change on a daily basis. I am sure even the ordinary Zimbabwean has become tired of this story in its various guises. It’s a charade which has lost steam.”