‘Grace treading on slippery ground’

ZIMBABWE’s political catfight could turn into an explosive and untenable situation if left unchecked, especially in the face of insinuations about military involvement in plots to “kill” President Robert Mugabe’s youngest son Bellarmine Chatunga, analysts and opposition parties have said.

BY RICHARD CHIDZA

First Lady Grace claimed at a rally in Chiweshe last Friday that sections of the army and a Zanu PF faction allegedly led by Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa were plotting to kill Chatunga and that they were responsible for the attempted bombing of her family’s dairy plant in Mazowe last month.

Political scientist Eldred Masunungure said Grace was treading on “dangerous ground”.

Grace-Mugabe-adressing-a-rally-in-Rushinga-yesterday First Lady Grace Mugabe

“The country’s politics has taken a very dangerous turn, whose effects could be and have always been too ghastly to contemplate. The utterances by the First Lady introduce an extremely dangerous dimension to the political fight for power and there is real cause for panic and deep worry among citizens,” he said.

Masunungure said Mugabe should be worried as were the rest of Zimbabweans, but the veteran Zanu PF leader must “do something”.

“Our hope is that the President and the Defence minister (Sydney Sekeramayi) will do everything they can to try and pacify the country’s securocrats in the face of such statements. If the idea is to get rid of so-called rogue elements both in the party and army, it could boomerang and destabilise the country’s security services. The more such reckless statements are made, the more danger the country descends into,” Masunungure said.

National Peace Trust executive director Trust Mamombe, while indicating the threat of bombing on the First Family’s business should be a cause for concern, said utterances attributed to “the First Lady have largely served to cause alarm and concern in our relatively peaceful nation”.

“Accusations of attempted murder and banditry directed at the national army and coming from the First Lady cannot be taken for granted. We urge all Zimbabweans to exercise restraint and caution in their intentions and utterances,” Mamombe said.

“The latest political events have left our stockpiles of peace at the lowest of levels post-independence. The National Peace Trust remains concerned and calls for enriched dialogue between inter and intra-party protagonists. Peace and stability remain a key cornerstone for socio-economic progress which remains a minimum expectation for all Zimbabweans.”

A former State bureaucrat, who spoke on condition of anonymity, warned that a fundamental shift in “the structure of the State is imminent”.

“When [Higher and Tertiary Education minister] Jonathan Moyo made the reference to abuse of military barracks, it was the first salvo on (Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander General Constantine) Chiwenga and (Presidential Guard Commander Brigadier General Anselem) Sanyatwe and that they are, somehow, involved in nefarious activities connected to the power struggles within Zanu PF. When you have a party/State conflation as we do, instability in the party means a split in the State and ultimately military,” he said.

“This is a slippery slope, anything can happen and not even those who claim to be in charge will be able to control the ramifications of what is happening”.

He added that the arrest of Prosecutor-General Johannes Tomana was part of a bigger and more vicious struggle for State control that could result in a reshuffle in the country’s military establishment, but warned of a possible “reaction”.

Tomana was arrested for allegedly cutting a deal with suspects in the threat to bomb Mugabe’s Gushungo dairy plant.

Zanu PF national political commissar Saviour Kasukuwere upped the ante when, at the same Chiweshe rally on Friday, he claimed the Mnangagwa faction was mobilising funds to bail out the “Mugabe bombers”.

20 Responses to ‘Grace treading on slippery ground’

  1. Chisingaperi Chinosura February 16, 2016 at 5:56 am #

    2016 is the year when it will all unravel. Finally change is coming. The Dictator and his inner circle, now fighting among themselves will soon meet their fate. Vachaurayana isu takatarisa tichiridza mupururu.

  2. Chisingaperi Chinosura February 16, 2016 at 6:00 am #

    Mwari has his people. Tanga takadzvinyirirwa for years but I see the light at the end of the tunnel. Be careful the light could be a freight train.

    • Sororezhou February 16, 2016 at 6:51 am #

      Actually, there could be a tunnel, an abyss even, at the end of that light that you seem to see. And, that is more frightening.

  3. Mafirakureva February 16, 2016 at 7:59 am #

    If Grace knows and understands the the path she is treading, then big ups for balls of steel. Otherwise, surely a village is missing an idiot.

  4. Gunguwo February 16, 2016 at 8:23 am #

    Things must get really bad, before they get better. Our complex political system can not just ‘transition’ into a better establishment without conflict and bloodshed. Am sorry to say but chinofanira kubvondoka before calming down. My prayer is that the conflict remains confined to Zanu pf.

  5. maita February 16, 2016 at 8:45 am #

    In her speech there was mention of 20 000 people killed, I wonder what she was insinuating.

  6. Sagitarr February 16, 2016 at 9:02 am #

    Zimbabwean citizens have for years been at the receiving end of both the police and army brutality.

    I doubt that if those within these organs start fighting, threatening each other or even killing off each other’s progeny this will cause “panic” to the citizenry. They will instead celebrate.

    We are tired of these foul, reckless, heartless and cruel people that think they are leading this country yet causing so much destruction.

    They are all fake and not as patriotic as they claim to be. Can you compare anyone of them to Jairos Jiri for example. … or to Strive Masiyiwa?

    It has been an easy life for most of them, enjoying unbridled patronage for over a generation but its all coming to an end. Most are going to lose their future, but first they will lose their sanity.

    I forsee bloodshed, and my prayer is that it be restricted to those who have been worshipping blood all these years. After all Zanu ndeyeropa – they say it all the time, but hardly think whose blood.

    • gutter poet February 16, 2016 at 10:36 am #

      What bloodshed? Our politics is simply self-correcting. Why should be any single or group of Zimbabweans who FEEL and are allowed to BELIEVE they are more special than everyone? Lets get rid of all these fake Gods from our midst and this country will be Zimbabwe again…Let people choose who they want to lead them…That my friends is the bottom line not this nonsense about groups, sub groups and quasi-groups allocating to themselves with no good reason to do as they please. If they were doing this to themselves it would be no problem but to force EVERYONE to bow to them for some historical fiction which our children are forced to accept..but then majority Zimbabweans come from Christian stock who have taken the dictum..’I am a jealous God’ to heart….

    • Nina February 19, 2016 at 8:54 pm #

      Well said the blood of those that shade unjust is coming back t o haunt them.They have eyes but they dnt see.Vachamukirana pachavo vachataura mitumbi yese yavakavinga.inga vakuru vakataurawani ropa remunhu harirovi.

  7. Ronald Matapire February 16, 2016 at 9:46 am #

    People, do not be myopic. Any conflict between/among ZANUPf factions involving the security is a major national security risk which will take down ever body. There is no ways that guns will go without harmingthe unarmed and innocent. Please wake up and not lose your vision because of your hatred for this abusive party. They are going down with every body. Do not be silly.

  8. BOSS February 16, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    THE SITUATION IS HARD TO CONTEPLATE AND TO EPITOMISE

    • Lewis Jones February 16, 2016 at 10:36 am #

      On the contrary; it’s quite simple really. This is an internecine “family” quarrel that has turned into a really ugly national fight. Unfortunately innocent bystanders will get hurt. Let us pray for the nation.

      • gutter poet February 16, 2016 at 10:58 am #

        A conflict between ZANUPF factions involving security WILL not be a major security risk…This will just blow over..Stop creating unnecessary fear and despondency! And real security sector personnel ARE NOT involved it is the politicians who are trying to put fear into citizens who peddle this line..They are the same rogues who send riot police to attack innocent demonstrators..These are just rogues abusing power not NATIONAL security officers!

  9. m February 16, 2016 at 11:34 am #

    Morgan we want Star rallies from next week, its our time now,i was almost loosing hope, but now am rejuvinated,Come on Tswangirai,its our time now.Ps 35 V5 , Weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning, Now its dawn.

  10. truth February 16, 2016 at 12:47 pm #

    i wonder why newsday continues to qoute the same clueless analyst who get every situation wrong,fof 36yrs they have failed to read and analyse any political situation in zim correctly,get it right,the president is the commander in chief,he appoints and disappoints the army generals,the generals derive their power from mugabe not viceversa,the president is at liberty of firing chiwenga at any moment and only an idiot believes chiwenga commands support within the rank and file of the army to lead a mutiny whose consequences he cannot bear with sadc zero tolerance for coups and the zimbabwean population disdain for chiwenga,noone should hold the country to ransom because he has been pushed off the gravy train,the first lady for all her shortcomings should be aplauded by all for taking on people who have for 36 yrs thought of themselves as the system

    • Nina February 19, 2016 at 9:05 pm #

      I agree as much as am not too sure about Grace intentions herself I appauld her for shouting out loud to inform us all of the filth that these politicians a up too.She certainly is not perfect but who is perfect in this world morefore mai Mugabe Taurai takateerera.

  11. Eremia February 16, 2016 at 2:14 pm #

    True my brother most of the times its the unarmed who suffer. And the so called big wigs will be in comfort while the war boils. They will have made arrangements for their own families to protect them in case of war. As of now we are all over the world fleeing economic problems. What about if war breaks out? This must come to our minds.

  12. sharp February 16, 2016 at 3:18 pm #

    if there is worried citizens, am not one of them, this is a substitute for lack of entertainment on local TV, its just another soap.

  13. Fundani Moyo February 16, 2016 at 9:15 pm #

    I believe the power that these Chiwengas wield within the army rank and file is overrated. If Chiwenga was fired today by Mugabe, very few in the army will miss him or even notice his absence. Remember, historically, most coups that have taken place are conducted by captains, majors and colonels. The sooner Amai retired these Polical generals the better. Zimbabwe needs an apolitical army and police force who will salute a leader chosen by the people regardless of their liberation war credentials. That paradigm shift is needed in the security sector.

  14. Nina February 19, 2016 at 9:13 pm #

    True tired of useless history takarwa hondo takarwa hondo an excuse to hold us at ransom and deprive us of our freedom.If I remember very well these so called freedom fighters were rapists,murders,basa rekudya huku nana chimbwido.We need fresh blood in the army people with new ideas.I care for the future of my children my grandchildren not these fallen still alive Herod.RIP

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