Follow the updates of the Zanu PF national conference currently underway in Masvingo.
President Robert Mugabe is ready to officially open the party’s 16th National People’s Conference, which promises to be volatile as factions continue to plot against each other in the ongoing succession wrangle.
MUGABE HAS ENDED HIS ADDRESS
“There is a new culture of indiscipline in the party…by those who think that they can do what they want in the party…the culture of disrespect and contempt and arrogance… I do not know what makes them behave like that.
When you are a member of the party, when you join the party,you are mature enough to know that there are rules to be obeyed.
“Others say VaMugabe hatichavada (must go), so if you no longer want me, what do you think should be done when others still love him…it does not happen that way, whether you are a detainee, a war veteran, or a long serving member of the party, we do not do that.”
“We do not address our grievances through twitter, Facebook etc…it is done by senior members, not junior
some quarrels, we do not even know them…we see them in papers…let us not be used to feed the (private) papers,that has made them survive..the papers will die if they do not report about Zanu PF”
1400: Mugabe says party members are allowed to interrogate resolutions by provinces in order to come up with resolutions that will guide Zanu PF in 2017.
“The party remains strong..there is no doubt about it…infact, very strong and formidable…we have all our opponents frustrated…they have been floored on the ground…a lot of silly parties emerging
zvinongodzengerera sezvitoto chinoti ukachitswanyira kumadziro chobva chaparara (they are confused…like insects, once you crush it, it dies)….the parties continue to reproduce, but (are) devoid of practical ideas to transform the country…(they have) no idea how to transform the economy…externally, countries that have been hostile to us, and all this time expected that Zanu Pf and the Zanu Pf government shall (sic) listen to them, and that there shall be regime change, (they) have failed to achieve that…there has not been regime change and there shall not be regime change.”
13:40 As Mugabe goes to the podium to make his address, he complains about poor Public Address system, “Nhai vakomana, chii chaakuitika,” and as the system is being attended to, delegates burst into song.
The PA system has been fixed and Mugabe starts his speech, in a rather predictable way, urging the spirit of unity in the fractious party.
“The spirit that used to guide states during the liberation struggle should continue going forward… as delegates we are expected to debate and profer solutions to several areas such as mining. farming etc …we are anticipating robust, frank and informed presentations and delegates subsequent discussions…all delegates are expected participate in the confernce on one way ot the other…the conference shld also look into to the state of the party in the just ending year
13:25. Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko, who is on the podium to introduce Mugabe, tells delegates the meeting is an ordinary conference, and not an elective congress, and that it will discuss performance of party and government. Mphoko- believed to be of the G40 faction- attacks ‘factionalists’ as ‘counter revolutionary and enemies of unity’.
“Zanu PF has a line of command which should be respected,” he says.
Divisions in the party continue to widen as delegates sing songs that are loaded with undertones and both subtle and open references to rival factions.
As Mugabe is being introduced to the delegates Masvingo sent a clear message through their song…”kumagumo kune nyaya..” while Midlands sings “havambonyura” in apparent reference to the fight for succession as Mugabe’s reign appears to be on its sunset.
Updates from Elias Mambo and Everson Mushava in Masvingo.
Editing by Tapiwa Zivira