BY RICHARD CHIDZA
WAR Veterans minister Tshinga Dube has reportedly been pushed into an invidious position and could be forced into supporting a faction of the former liberation war fighters fronted by Manicaland Provincial Affairs minister Mandi Chimene, NewsDay has learnt.
Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) chairman, Christopher Mutsvangwa told NewsDay Weekender that the Zanu PF politburo secretary for war veterans and Defence minister Sydney Sekeramayi pushed for a resolution that would force Dube into supporting the Chimene group.
“At last Wednesday’s politburo meeting, Sekeramayi pushed for a resolution to frog-march Dube to the Mashonaland Central youth interface rally on Saturday (tomorrow), where he is supposed to denounce the ZNLWVA and instead support Chimene and her coterie of hangers-on.
“Sekeramayi has been pushing for this and now wants to rope in a recalcitrant Dube into this illegal act,” Mutsvangwa charged.
He said there was a High Court order against Chimene and her group that includes George Mlala. Zanu PF leaders are embroiled in a bitter power tussle with war veterans, for years the fulcrum upon which President Robert Mugabe has built his stay in power now a constant frontier in the struggle for control.
Dube confirmed the development, but would not be drawn into revealing whether he was ready to ditch Mutsvangwa after months of holding his ground.
“Come to Bindura on Saturday (today). You can interview me after my speech on war veterans issues. I have sort of been told that the politburo discussed it and that the secretary for war veterans (Sekeramayi) will talk to me about it,” he said.
Mutsvangwa and his group of former fighters have identified with a faction reportedly loyal to Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa, while Sekeramayi had his name thrown into the succession ring by Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo, a leading light in a rival faction known as G40.
Former War Veterans minister, Mutsvangwa took potshots at Sekeramayi’s bid in the wake of developments that could render his ZNLWVA impotent.
“Throwing legal strictures to the wind, Sydney Sekeramayi, the G40 aspirant to the Presidency, harangued the Zanu PF politburo yesterday (Wednesday). Is this the kind of President Zimbabwe would want? One who tears the Constitution apart for power?
“Our Constitution is clear that there is separation of power between the judiciary and the executive, but not in Sekeramayi’s mind,” he said.
Mutsvangwa said Zanu PF could force Dube to denounce the ZNLWVA, but his position was now known.
“We all know what Tshinga Dube believes in. Respected Tshinga Dube is a pioneer of the armed struggle from the nascent 1960s.
“He has seen it all while Sekeramayi wandered in Western countries as an itinerant student, who never made it to be a qualified doctor … a situation that still obtains with him today unlike the late Felix Muchemwa, who obtained his credentials from the relevant national professional body,” the ZNLWVA boss said.
Sekeramayi was not available for comment, as his mobile went unanswered.