FIRST Lady Grace Mugabe has sensationally claimed there are moles within President Robert Mugabe’s administration who are sabotaging government’s much-vaunted, but ill-funded economic blueprint, Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (ZimAsset).
BY RICHARD CHIDZA/NQOBANI NDLOVU
She made the claims yesterday while addressing several thousands of villagers at Matabeleland South’s Maphisa business centre in Matobo district as part of her “meet-the-people” rallies.
“There are rogue elements who are sabotaging ZimAsset,” Grace charged without elaborating.
The First Lady also implored non-governmental organisations to “call for the lifting of sanctions” imposed on Mugabe and his inner circle by the United States and previously the European Union on allegations of human rights violations and electoral fraud. State Security minister Kembo Mohadi also blamed the alleged Zanu PF moles for ZimAsset’s failure to “jumpstart” the economy.
Speaking at the same event, Mohadi said: “When we went to war, we were told that the real struggle would follow and that battle is economic emancipation. The economic struggle is continuing and those who can’t endure the pain must move out of the way. We never get misguided by the fact that we are ministers and we want to fight.”
Government has literally come to a standstill as warring Zanu PF factions tear at each other over control of the party. A group of Young Turks, going by the name Generation 40 (G40), is allegedly rooting for Grace who, however, seems to have hit the brakes in the past few weeks after initially making indications she wanted to succeed her 91-year-old husband.
G40 – which reportedly has in its ranks Zanu PF political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere, Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo and Mugabe’s nephew Patrick Zhuwao – is allegedly plotting to block Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s bid to take over the Presidency.
But Mnangagwa – long-viewed as Mugabe’s heir apparent, and is in charge of the economic revival cluster – has kept his cool. Mnangagwa last month seemed to issue a chilling warning to his adversaries.
He told stunned delegates at the fund-raising dinner for Zanu PF annual conference in Harare that “painful decisions” would have to be made in the ruling party.
Grace has of late toned down on her rhetoric after pronouncements that analysts had intimated were aimed at the VP amid reports there was a plot to have Mnangagwa deposed from his position and allocated the shelved national chairman’s position.
Two weeks ago, Grace acknowledged she was a junior to Mnangagwa and that the VP, who also oversees the Justice ministry, would take over in the event her husband “goes”.