HomeLocal NewsMutsvangwa stages coup in Midlands

Mutsvangwa stages coup in Midlands

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ZIMBABWE National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) chairman, Christopher Mutsvangwa’s acolytes in Midlands province, who had been locked out of their offices at the height of an acrimonious internal fight for control last year, found their way back this week.

BY Stephen Chadenga

WAR veterans’ national chairman Christopher Mutsvangwa
WAR veterans’ national chairman Christopher Mutsvangwa

Mutsvangwa’s provincial executive had been locked out of its offices for the past five months by a rival faction sympathetic to Manicaland Provincial Affairs minister Mandiitawepi Chimene. Chimene and Mutsvangwa reportedly belong to different factions of Zanu PF in the ongoing succession cat-fight.

The ZNLWVA’s provincial leadership fronted by Virginia Mupasu was forced to lock the offices in a bid to shut out a rival group led by interim provincial vice-chairperson, Noah Kasikai.

Kashai and his group had claimed they had the legal right to occupy the offices.

But the Mupasu group remained adamant, saying they did not recognise the meeting by the Chimene-led faction that had booted them out of office.

Although Mupasu could not be reached for comment, NewsDay yesterday witnessed business as usual at the liberation war fighters’ offices.

“We are the bona-fide office holders and as you can see it’s business as usual for us this year,” one war veteran, who requested anonymity, said.

Last week War Veterans minister Tshinga Dube said Mutsvangwa was still in charge of ZNLWA despite his expulsion from government and the ruling Zanu PF party.

Dube said Chimene’s group could not get government recognition because it had been “self-imposed”, saying only a proper congress could remove Mutsvangwa from the war veterans leadership.

“When the war veterans were unhappy with Jabulani Sibanda they held a congress in Masvingo and elected Mutsvangwa, so until and unless they elect a new leadership, the ministry will recognise Mutsvangwa as chairman,” Dube was quoted then.

Mutsvangwa’s ZNLWVA has explicitly declared it is backing Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa, while the Chimene group is reportedly backed by a faction in the ruling party known as G40 and pushing for First Lady Grace Mugabe to take over from her ailing husband.

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