ZANU PF national chairperson Simon Khaya Moyo on Sunday moved in to quell discontent within the party’s Matabeleland South structures after provincial chair Andrew Langa allegedly asked MPs to donate an ox each to fulfil the pledge of 13 beasts he made at President Robert Mugabe daughter’s wedding last month.
The MPs were unhappy about being forced to part with their beasts saying all 13 must come from Langa’s kraal since he had made the pledge “personally” without consulting them beforehand.
Langa reportedly pledged at Bona’s wedding to Simba Chikore in Harare last month that since Matabeleland South had cleanly swept the 13 seats in the July 31 elections, the province would donate 13 beasts.
Khaya Moyo held a meeting with members of the provincial executive as well as legislators at a Bulawayo hotel on Sunday in a bid to ease the simmering tensions.
“The meeting was called to address a myriad of issues that are affecting the province,” a Zanu PF insider said.
“Firstly, Langa pledged 13 beats at Bona’s wedding without consulting other legislators.
“When the news got to the ears of other legislators, they raised dust arguing that they were never consulted on the matter, with others saying they did not have cattle to contribute a beast each as Langa had demanded.
“Langa reportedly told the legislators that he, as provincial chairperson, had supported their candidature in the run-up to last year’s elections and threatened to sabotage their future bids if they did not donate a beast each for Bona’s wedding.
“That is one of the issues that was discussed at the meeting.”
The insider said Khaya Moyo also addressed the uneasy working relationship between Matabeleland South Provincial Affairs minister Abednico Ncube and Langa.
Ncube, who was at the stormy meeting, was accused of undermining Langa and at times insulting him using vulgarities.
“It was revealed that Ncube had no respect for Langa and at times insults him using vulgar language,” the source said. “The chairman urged the two to work harmoniously together.”
Contacted for comment, Langa confirmed that the meeting was held, but said it was a routine gathering for politburo and central committee members to review progress in the province.
“Legislators were not invited to the meeting. It was a routine meeting. We usually hold it in Gwanda, but we held it in Bulawayo because most of us were in the city that day,” Langa said.
“The cattle for Bona’s wedding had nothing to do with the meeting or MPs. In fact, the position is that those cattle will go as said.”
Langa said he and Ncube were like brothers and enjoyed good working relations.
“We have worked together with Ncube for a long time in the party,” he said.
“The meeting was a fruitful one; it was meant to build and beef up the party as we continue to celebrate our victory in last year’s elections.”