Zanu-PF Harare provincial Youth League chairman Cde Godwin Gomwe yesterday said the Youth League was being torn apart by some senior party officials who were using money to influence votes. Cde Gomwe said some party heavyweights in Harare, among them politburo members Cde Tendai Savanhu, Secretary for Administration Cde Didymus Mutasa, Central Committee member Cde Noah Mangondo and provincial chairman Cde Amos Midzi, were using money to create confusion in the party.
He said comrades Mutasa, Midzi, Mangondo and Savanhu were the main culprits.
“As the youth chairman I know that the youths had their choice for the position of secretary for administration in Cde Innocent Hamandise, but Cde Midzi and company spread the word that Cde Hamandise was not wanted by the party.
“In fact, he was called by Cde Mangondo who threatened him that he would be arrested and that he had received an instruction from Cde Mutasa that he should not stand. Apart from influencing the process by dropping names, they also gave district chairmen some money to vote in a particular manner and we have the evidence in which the chairmen got and signed for US$10.”
However, Cde Midzi refused to comment yesterday, but said: “You always write rubbish about me. I do not want to talk to you.”
Cde Mutasa’s phone was answered by a female who said: “VaMutasa varara.”
Cde Savanhu’s phone was not being answered.
This comes as Zanu-PF Mashonaland West provincial youth league executive meeting called yesterday to pass a vote of no confidence in chairman, Cde Vengai Musengi, was cancelled after failing to constitute a quorum.
Cde Musengi — who says he is being targeted for endorsing First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe — was the only item on the agenda in a meeting earlier scheduled for Thursday, but was moved to yesterday in Chinhoyi.
Only 17 members out of the 40-member executive were present leading to the meeting being cancelled as it failed to meet the 22 members needed.
Some youths said on condition of anonymity that there were some anomalies in the manner the meeting was called.
The meeting was called by the Secretary for Information Cde Dominic Muza, instead of the deputy chairman Cde Joseph Nyariri, who is the acting chairman.
“There is an anomaly that led most youths not attending the meeting,” said a youth member who declined to be named.
“The meeting cannot be called by the secretary for information when there is a deputy chairman.”
Meanwhile, there has been a petition that has been reportedly circulating among the youth executive members which has failed to meet the required 28 signatures for the vote of no confidence in Cde Musengi.
There are reports that out of about 19 youths who signed the petition, some wanted to withdraw affidavits.
As the political drama unfolds Zanu-PF yesterday exonerated the youths and said they did not breach the gag order imposed by the party’s national chairman, Ambassador Simon Khaya Moyo, after they announced that they will brief President Mugabe on what transpired in the party while he was China.
The youths want to have a meeting with President on his arrival at the Harare International Airport tomorrow.
Cde Gomwe on Wednesday told the media that the youths would go to the airport in their thousands to welcome the President.
His remarks came in the wake of a gag order by Cde Khaya Moyo, who on Wednesday summoned all provincial chairpersons and told them not to conduct party business through the media.
However, in an interview yesterday, Zanu-PF spokesperson Cde Rugare Gumbo said the youths were free to organise themselves for any event.
“There is nothing untoward about that because the youths are free to organise themselves for any event,” he said.
“If they want to go and welcome the President, there is nothing wrong with that.”
Cde Gomwe’s call to welcome the President followed reports that some Zanu-PF provincial committees want youth leaders who supported the First Lady Amai Grace Mugabe to assume the position of National Secretary for Women’s Affairs to be expelled from the party.
The youth leaders say they are also being victimised for refusing to chant a controversial slogan, which puts other members of the Presidium at par with the party’s First Secretary and President.
The purges have started with Harare and Mashonaland West where some of the youth leaders are being summoned to appear before disciplinary committees on charges insiders described as “frivolous”.
Youth leaders from other provinces said they were not being victimised, but were aware of the situation.
Cde Gomwe said youths would brief the President on all political developments that took place while he was away.
“In light of these developments, the Zanu-PF Harare Youth League will spearhead the mobilisation of all youths to be on hand to receive the President when he touches down in Harare on Sunday. As the youth chairman of the capital city, I will be co-ordinating with colleagues from other provinces to ensure a befitting welcome for our hero and President who has once again done the nation proud.
“This will give us an opportunity to provide a brief to His Excellency on the political developments that have been transpiring whilst he was away. As is well known, the Zanu-PF Youth League is the vanguard of the party and stands ready to defend and preserve our hard-won independence,” Cde Gomwe said.