NPP’s Mujuru unopposed

National People’s Party (NPP) interim leader Joice Mujuru will go to the party’s inaugural convention slated for early next month unchallenged, while six candidates will battle for the two slots reserved for the former Vice-President’s deputies.

BY Everson Mushava

NPP leader Joice Mujuru
NPP leader Joice Mujuru

Last Monday was the cut-off date for submissions of nominations from members aspiring to contest for the opposition party’s top six positions.

The NPP is currently run by an interim administration headed by Mujuru and is set to choose substantive leaders ahead of the 2018 general elections.

Mujuru “rebranded” her group into NPP after a row with ex-allies-cum-adversaries Rugare Gumbo and Didymus Mutasa, leaving the two to share the leadership of the Zimbabwe People First party.

A list seen by NewsDay showed Mujuru was unchallenged, but six people were set to battle it out to become her two deputies, three have been nominated for national chairman, five for secretary-general and three for treasurer.

Career ambassador John Mvundura (74), who is the interim secretary for foreign affairs and retired soldier Elliot Kasu (55), who currently leads the party’s war veterans arm will battle for the position of first vice-president, while ex-Cabinet minister Samuel Sipepa Nkomo (77), Cuthbert Ncube (42), Linda Dube (55) and Bongani Nyathi, will battle for the position of second vice-president.

Former Energy minister Dzikamai Mavhaire, who is secretary for mobilisation will battle it out with Bancinyane Wilson and Maduma Bekezela for party national chairperson post.

Nelson Mashizha, Hamadziripi Dube, Mujuru’s spokesperson Gift Nyandoro, former Mbire MP David Butau and lawyer Petronella Musarurwa are eyeing the secretary-general position.

Engineer and banker Wilbert Mubaiwa, Nkuta Bukhosi and Ndou Moffat will battle for treasurer-general position.

However, NPP members who spoke to NewsDay on condition of anonymity said they were concerned that the front runners in deputising Mujuru were older than the party leader, which would threaten succession plans and throw the party into the Zanu PF succession melodrama.

“Look at Mvundura and Nkomo, they are above 70. If Mujuru wins next year, Nkomo will be 88 when she finishes her two terms and Mvundura 85. They won’t be able to take over. There is need to have younger blood, who can be groomed to take over for continuity,” a senior party member said, arguing there was need for an age limit for contestants.

Party spokesperson Jealousy Mawarire could neither deny nor confirm the authenticity of the list, but said his party would not discriminate people on any basis including age.

“We can’t have a party that discriminates against the youths, the elderly or women. Our people should be allowed to choose their leaders freely, if they decide that they want to be led by the aged, that is their choice and as democrats, we will respect their will,” Mawarire said.

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  1. Sothe youngest in the leadership structures being 42??

  2. The same Mugabe style in zanu pf & Tsvangirai’s in his MDC -T,frightening everybody else in the political grouping.It turns a taboo to contest the half-god leader,if u ever try then u don’t remain in the party. The iron of it all is that the same groupings call themselves democracies or fighting for democracy when in actual fact the scenario is clear-cut autocracy.The sycophants & bootlickers in the political grouping are too shy & timid to challenge the boss on the legitimacy of such a scenario.Then what shld we trust as a nation fr such organization.There is no open platform for democracy in such enties like the MDC-T,&now again the NPP as it was always in ZANU PF who created this dictatorship scenario of Mugabe over the years.WHAT HOPE IS THERE FOR OUR NATION WHEN ALL TURN DICTATORS!

  3. problem is the young people are busy involved in Instagram, Facebook popularity contests to even think of the real issues…they want the grown ups to deal with it but not knowing they hold the key to change in Zimbabwe….besides that its just lack of interest in all young people

    1. This is incorrect, young people are yearning to get involved, are attending meetings, contributing to the conversation but it is increasingly challenging to see where we can really have a role and impact. Zimbabwe also has to wake up to different methods of technological advancements in communication. There is no reason why these parties cannot have a Facebook page, twitter account or even just an up to date website in addition to their current communication channels. This is able everyone to engage.

  4. We always don’t select our leaders fr an open contest in n political outfit which emerges in our country.They all follow Mugabe’s example in their systems.No hope for our nation.How can they b elected to ZIMBABWE HOUSE if they fail in their parties.We are always forced to select fr all bad apples as result come elections at national level.Mugabe wants to remain at all times, may b as a king of zimbabwe ,doing all the manipulations to remain& so Mujuru & her friend Tsvangirai. Lets see if Bite &Ncube & among the rest of others who would b different.Zimbabwe will soon allow a plethora of real democrats to emerge within our mildest; help us god!

  5. @bastian I tend to agree with your observation. The younger folk would rather be on Whatsapp, Instagram, Twitter or Facebook (software toys) than engaging in actual productive work to care about their future. Fewer are on linkedIn, which is a professional network where one has to divulge their education (or lack of it).

    Having said this, Mawarire isn’t it hypocritical to say Mugabe is too old to rule and then soon after that claim that you not gonna be discriminating based on age. Playing with semantics eh?

  6. The issue of Mugabe is more about his leadership qualities or more appropriately, the lack thereof than his age. That said, when one is the twilight of life, biologically, age becomes an issue of concern. Kindly stop befuddling issues. Only a fool who feels that muddying the waters will make it easy for him/her catch to the fish!

  7. No question of youth’s complacency here, but lack of open democratic platform in the political formations.Space for open contest by other elders or colleagues in the party

  8. Youngsters seem to shun politics, and don’t appear eager to rise to the top for reasons best known to themselves. So, let those with the will power soldier on. Do you expect party leaders to carry the youths on their backs to generate interest ? Fight for those positions and prove that you are willing to lead and stop being cry babies.

  9. Simply have a retirement age for presidency. Make 80 years a retirement age for presidency and vice-presidency. Simple and klar

  10. Why do people from the south always want to be second best? I think one vice president is fine.

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