Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) leader and former Vice-President Joice Mujuru will not divulge some details of President Robert Mugabe’s misrule and right abuses because of fear of contravening the Official Secrets Act.
BY RICHARD CHIDZA/BLESSED MHLANGA
In an interview with South African radio station SAFM on Tuesday, Mujuru was asked if she was ready to come clean and spill the beans on alleged election rigging and other alleged atrocities committed by Mugabe and his administration in the 34 years she was in government.
“I did not take part (in rigging). It is not something that is for public consumption. It could not have been a public thing,” she said.
“It was not something that every Jack and Jill would know if it ever happened. I did not know or come across it. But the other thing that you should understand is that when you are appointed under oath, [you cannot reveal] all the things.”
Mujuru once again apologised for her role in the repressive policies that trampled on the rights of the people under Mugabe’s leadership.
“Yes, I am sorry. One should just work to show that she did not approve the policies that were meant to persecute people,” she said.
The ZimPF leader revealed she has found it rather unfair that people were painting her with the same brush as Mugabe when it came to accusations of running down the country and the political mess Zimbabwe found itself in.
Mujuru was also evasive on what action she would take on her former colleagues accused of human rights abuses.
“These are the issues we are discussing in the meetings we have had even with brutalised people and those that were maimed. We have met them and they know our position on these issues,” she said.
Mujuru said problems between her and Mugabe started as early as 2006, just two years after her elevation to the Vice-Presidency.
“He (Mugabe) spoke badly about me at the Gweru conference in 2006. It was because I had spoken against political violence and the violation of people’s rights,” she claimed.
“We did not fight for one centre of power; we fought so that everyone is important in the development of the country. Once you begin to hear someone speak in language such as ‘my people, my country, me, me, me’, then you realise all that we fought for has been flushed down the drain.
It was done in a subtle manner and silently but between 2013 and 2014, it reared its ugly head.”
The former Vice-President said she had long realised that Zanu PF had lost direction, but tried unsuccessfully to reform the party from within.
“I intended to change things from within and we failed,” she said.
“We failed because at the time it seemed as if not many people agreed with my way of thinking within the party. However, the fact that he (Mugabe) went about firing and continues to fire people to this day means we were in the majority.
“We kept hoping that the party would stick to its values and Constitution, using majority decisions and election process as a way of changing leadership. But the one centre of power mantra showed us our efforts were futile.”
Mujuru apologised for poor decisions made during her time, adding she was like the biblical Saul who later became Paul after repenting from darkness and seeing the light.