Lovemore Mataire Senior Reporter
Factionalists and secessionists without institutional memory and emotional attachment to the liberation struggle are behind the current disharmony in the revolutionary ZANU-PF party, war veterans’ leader Cde Christopher Mutsvangwa, has said. In a no-holds-barred interview recently, Cde Mutsvangwa, who is the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association chairperson and also the Minister of Welfare Services for War Veterans, War Collaborators, Former Political Detainees and Restrictees, said some people with dubious histories were fomenting divisions.
“There are certain people with dubious histories who are causing divisions in the party. Like all opportunists, all these so-called G40s (Generation 40) must have the courage of their convictions and form their own party like what Morgan Tsvangriai did. They must not try to appropriate a party that so many people worked and died for, to refashion it into their own images,” said Cde Mutsvangwa.
Cde Mutsvangwa said some “arrivistes” with overblown egos suffering from mental amnesia had hatched a plan to purge all former freedom fighters in the vain hope of one day taking over the revolutionary party.
“There is a certain professor who thinks that the status and glories accorded to him in the party and with an overblown ego thinks that he can one day be the leader. He suffers from mental amnesia about his truancy at the crucial stage of the armed struggle. And has affinity to his uncle who was dethroned from the army and later commanded an army against the liberation struggle. Everybody knows Ndabaningi Sithole and his retrogressive role in the struggle,” Cde Mutsvangwa said.
He said the same professor was on record seeking the posthumous rehabilitation of Sithole. Cde Mutsvangwa said the G40 was the brainchild of Professor Jonathan Moyo, the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development, who penned an article advocating for the usurpation of power by younger people in ZANU-PF.
“The criteria for its identification and existence can be traced to the person who authored it. It was in an article, which recently appeared in the Press where the same professor talked about the G40. How do you deny something which has been penned by the person who organises it? How do you deny it for him?” Cde Mutsvangwa said.
He said Prof Moyo and his cohorts were irreverent to those who fought the war in the 1950s and 1960s and was patronising young people in order to claim leadership based on age and experience as he could not confront his peers.
“We are not surprised that he is brazenly questioning the ethos, conduct and inheritance of a war, which he absconded from, which he was a coward to fight. Now he wants the glory of that victory to become his pedestal to become a new power broker in Zimbabwe.
“We will not accept Moyo as a power broker in Zimbabwe. If he wanted to be a power broker he should have remained throughout the struggle and, if he had remained in the struggle, I want to question whether he would have remained with his life, because in the struggle, there was a lottery for lives and many people perished.”
Cde Mutsvangwa said the vote of no confidence recently passed by the Mashonaland West provincial executive was of no consequence as the people behind it lacked knowledge of party procedures and ethos. He said the vote of no confidence was an extrapolation of power as he was a direct appointee of President Mugabe.
The war veterans’ leader said some young and ambitious people were taking advantage of the vulnerability of some former freedom fighters wallowing in poverty to instigate divisions within the association.