BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
ZIMBABWE’s liberation war fighters, long feared for leading a terror campaign against opposition party activists in previous elections, are likely to spearhead Zanu PF’s 2023 election campaign, NewsDay has learnt.
Zanu PF Mashonaland East provincial chair, Joel Biggie Matiza told a provincial co-ordinating committee meeting at the weekend that war veterans had been incorporated into the main party structures to reinforce the ruling party’s mobilisation exercise ahead of 2023 general elections.
“We are happy that the war veterans are now a wing. They used to be an affiliate, but the current set-up is good for the party as they play an important role in mobilising supporters as well as safeguarding the ethos of the party. We will be working closely with them as well as appointing some of them in influential positions to strengthen our party,” he said.
During the party’s national annual conference in Goromonzi last month, Zanu PF resolved to incorporate war veterans into the main party structures as it seeks to consolidate power ahead of the elections.
The war veterans have previously played a pivotal role in Zanu PF through leading violent election campaigns against the opposition, invading white farms as well as instilling war ideologies among party supporters.
They have, however, often clashed with the party’s top leadership after they demanded preferential treatment and improvement of their welfare.