ZAPU national coordinator, John Dlamini yesterday said the elevation of First Lady Grace Mugabe to lead the Zanu PF women’s league had put the country on the edge, because of her vindictive approach to national politics.
BY SILAS NKALA
“If we are to make a realistic security threat assessment, all fingers will point to the First Family as threat number one. Zimbabwean women, youth and the church are all under siege by Grace. Even her husband, Robert [President Mugabe] is under siege,” Dlamini said.
“Already Mugabe has expelled two Vice-Presidents [Joice Mujuru in 2014 and Emmerson Mnangagwa on Monday] in less than five years. A number of senior Zanu PF and government officials have either been expelled or suspended. War veterans’ leadership has not been spared. Senior army officials are being harassed and humiliated at public rallies.”
He said Zanu PF structures were under siege from Grace.
“The commandeered demonstrations are a clear testimony they are not independent and function under command. Government ministers are always seen kneeling down at Grace’s feet. This is not out of respect. Neither is it cultural, but it’s out of fear of the First Lady, who operates on a serious patronage and intimidation system,” he said.
“Industry in Zimbabwe is forced to contribute to Zanu PF and the First Lady’s activities. Schools are closed at every turn, with school buses forcibly directed to ferry rented crowds to Zanu PF rallies. Civil servants are forced to contribute money towards Zanu PF and First Lady’s activities. Traditional leaders have not been spared.”
Dlamini also said churches have become a Zanu PF constituency, with Grace ordering them all to merge and form one Zanu PF-sponsored structure recently. He said the church leadership is constantly commandeered to make certain pronouncements in solidarity and support of the First Family.
“We as Zapu view all this as a serious security threat to the nation. We are slowly leading to a situation where there will be mistrust within the country, even between and within families because of the patronage and intimidation systems being used by the First Family,” he said.
“However, as Zapu, we know very well these are traits of dictatorship. We also know that the paranoia being displayed is synonymous with a dictatorship whose days are numbered.”
“We remind the nation of president Dumiso Dabengwa’s warning when Grace was elevated to the chair of women’s league that a dynasty must not be allowed in Zimbabwe. Here it unfolds as the Black Russian warned.”
Dlamini said Zimbabwe was no longer fighting for economic emancipation, for there was no economy left to talk about and the fight was no longer for democratic reforms, but a fight against dictatorship and the Mugabe dynasty.