Mugabe flies into storm

PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe is set to fly into a storm as tensions are reaching boiling point in Zanu PF, with Didymus Mutasa insisting he is still a member of the party and cannot be expelled by an illegal structure.


Reports indicated that Mugabe was due to arrive in the country last Friday from his year-end holiday, but indications are that he is not yet back.

Mutasa upped the ante at the weekend, saying he expected a response from Mugabe to a letter he and other axed Zanu PF members sent to Sadc.

Didymus Mutasa

Didymus Mutasa

Mugabe is the chairman of the regional body and he will be expected to handle a grievance against himself and the party he leads.

The axed Zanu PF secretary for administration wrote to Sadc leaders and the chairman about his grievances with the party and its conduct of the December congress.

“No, I have not yet received the response,” he said.

“The response will come from the chairman of Sadc (Mugabe).”

Mutasa could not be drawn into speculating whether he foresaw Mugabe responding to his letter.

However, South African President Jacob Zuma’s spokesman, Mac Maharaj, said he had not seen the letter Mutasa had written to his principal complaining about the congress.

“I can’t tell you anything at the moment, I am still checking,” he said.

South African President Jacob Zuma’s spokesman, Mac Maharaj

South African President Jacob Zuma’s spokesman, Mac Maharaj

Maharaj said he could not promise when he could give a definitive response to Mutasa’s letter, as he was yet to see it.

Responding to reports that he had been expelled from Zanu PF, Mutasa said he did not recognise the meeting that deliberated on his fate.

“I don’t belong to the sixth congress of Zanu PF,” he said.

“That is illegal, but I belong to Zanu PF prior to the sixth congress.

“They are not members of that, so they cannot expel me.”

Mutasa is expected, in the coming few days, to launch a court appeal, challenging the Zanu PF congress.

Zanu PF insiders believe Mutasa is doing former Vice-President Joice Mujuru’s bidding and that she may be the one behind the court process.

Mutasa becomes the fourth high-ranking Zanu PF official to be expelled from the paty since the purging of perceived Mujuru allies began last October.

The next Zanu PF politburo meeting is expected to endorse Mutasa’s expulsion.

Former party spokesperson Rugare Gumbo, war veterans’ leader Jabulani Sibanda and Chipinge South legislator Enoch Porusingazi are others that have been booted out.

Zanu PF officials who attended the Manicaland meeting said Mutasa was expelled from the party for writing a strongly-worded letter to Sadc leaders in December 2014, imploring them to intervene in the country’s deepening political crisis spawned by the party’s internal fighting.

The Manicaland provincial leaders accused Mutasa of being disrespectful of Mugabe and the party in the statement he released last week on Monday.

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