On Thursday evening, Professor Jonathan Moyo, with embattled national Political Commissar Saviour Kasukuwere, his half-brother Dickson Mafios, Patrick Zhuwao and Wonder Mashange as cheerleaders, was the main speaker at a SAPES Policy dialogue to discuss the future of the nationalist project.
What raised eyebrows was not that Prof Moyo appeared at SAPES, he is a regular there and was part of the furniture during his estrangement from Zanu-PF, what was surprising was that Prof Moyo chose to go against his principal’s wise counsel not to take party and/or Government business outside party forums.
And the fact that Prof Moyo chose to do so on the eve of the launch of Zanu-PF’s campaign for the 2018 harmonised elections manifest in the first of the Youth League’s 10 Nationwide Presidential Youth Interface rallies, was quite revealing.
To make matters worse, Prof Moyo chose to play one of the most senior party leaders from Mashonaland East, Dr Sydney Sekeramayi, against Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa whom he claimed was unfit to advance the nationalist project. It is important to note that in all the years we have known him, Dr Sekeramayi has never shown as uncultured a mouth as Prof Moyo regularly exhibits which leaves us wondering if he approved of Prof Moyo’s antics.
Prof Moyo’s motives for trying to brew discord ahead of the launch of the Zanu-PF campaign can only be lost to the blind given that he is also the only Zanu-PF official who disputes the success of the Command Agriculture programme, itself one of the success stories of the party and Government he is a member of, and sure to be a key campaign issue.
Interestingly even more revealing was the fact that Prof Moyo, a presumed man of letters, either by omission or commission , spoke authoritatively from a position of ignorance, all to score cheap pot-shots In so doing, he displayed scant understanding of the nationalist project which he tried to frame as he conflated it with one man or presumed faction of Zanu-PF oblivious to the fact that the adjective nationalist derives from the noun national which denotes a wider, national movement.
This clearly showed that he was not grounded in Zanu-PF history or ethos despite his pretensions. The Prof was also offside on the history he purported to be privy to as he located Vice President Mnangagwa in the struggle from 1977, the time he went to Mozambique yet history will show Cde Mnangagwa was at the inaugural ZANU congress in Gweru in 1964. What is more, he had earlier been recruited into Zapu in 1962 by Cde Willie Musarurwa
Be that as it may, though he tried to spice his presentation with a scholarly tinge, it should not be lost to anyone that what Prof Moyo gave at SAPES were his preferences for leadership, particularly in light of Prof Stephen Chan’s assertions that the G40 cabal lacks a unifying face.
But that is a story for another day. It was instructive that before his rambling presentation, Prof Moyo made a caveat: He claimed he was speaking in his personal capacity though in the same breath he cast himself as a Zanu-PF loyalist.
Through the caveat, however, Prof Moyo showed he knew he was out of line, but the question remains: When is one a Minister in Government, a Politburo member and a Jonathan when he conflates all three hats in a presentation? It is not a secret that Prof Moyo keeps thumbing his nose at the party leadership because he is used to getting away with his transgressions.
It is high time the Zanu-PF disciplinary machine threw the book at him as he is doing exactly what Sarah Mahoka did. What is more, Prof Moyo regularly does it on Twitter and in the private media with no comebacks.
Fire once teased snarls all the way to ash, and one bad apple left to fester spoils an entire basket.
We rest our case.