Reason Wafawarova on Monday
ZANU-PF has a life beyond any of its members, as indeed is supposed to happen with all well-established organisations — they outlive their members and they perpetuate themselves.
This is what organisational sociology says.
At the peak of factional fighting within ZANU-PF, many people predicted an Armageddon implosion, and it was a safe academic bet to suggest that the death of former President Robert Mugabe would bring with it the ultimate demise of the revolutionary party.
Well, today both ZANU-PF and President Mugabe are alive, and the latter is no longer the leader of the party.
There was an unwritten consensus that only Cde Mugabe was gluing things together in ZANU-PF, and we were constantly reminded that nobody else respected anybody else once Mugabe was outside the picture.
It looked true with those routine public humiliations of VP Mnangagwa by very junior members of the party.
The ZANU-PF we saw in the last two weeks of Cde Mugabe’s reign was ironically united in the push to recall its leader as the Head of State and Government, and to have him vacate the leadership of the party.
It had become normal to assume that it was Cde Mugabe who wielded constitutional power over ZANU-PF the party, not the party over his office.
This delusional perception was created, nurtured, peddled and promoted by self-centred politicians who abused their proximity to the leader to wield his powers against their own rivals within the party.
To them the “one centre of power” meant whatever the President chose to do was the way, for as long as the deed was against political rivals.
This gang was led by Jonathan Moyo, powered by the abrasion of Saviour Kasukuwere as ZANU-PF national commissar, and relied on Patrick Zhuwao for connection to the President’s office, him being the nephew politician of the big man.
Jonathan Moyo and his gang would organise political platforms for President Mugabe and his wife to hit out at the perceived enemies of the G40 cabal, from Joice Mujuru to Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The traditional speech-writers for the President were sidelined as Jonathan Moyo and his cabal took over the scripts that Cde Mugabe and his excitable wife would read at these highly politicised gatherings.
We know the cabal went by the name G40 (Generation 40), and today its leadership is scattered in a way that makes the post-AD70 displacement of the Jewish nation look like child’s play.
Jonathan Moyo, Kasukuwere and Zhuwao are in self-imposed exile, and from what we have heard of them so far the G40 has transformed itself into the B40 (Bitterness 40).
It is all anger and bitterness from undeclared hideouts.
Here is how the G40 was built within ZANU-PF before its dramatic demise on November 15.
Enough warnings were issued, but Moyo does not do heeding of warnings, does he?
Jonathan Moyo needed youth numbers for this nefarious group of reactionaries, so he capitalised on youth naivety, youth unemployment, youth vulnerability, and youth poverty to promote a telling culture of patronage where the only answer to livelihood appeared to be G40 political activism.
To achieve this, Kasukuwere and Zhuwao took turns to create bogus youth funds at the Youth Ministry, hype the idea in the media, distribute a little bit of money to a few youths, dangle the prospect of loans to would-be beneficiaries and that way swell the numbers for the cabal.
When Kasukuwere was moved to Local Government, the baiting worm for the poverty-stricken youths became residential stands.
Kasukuwere openly dished out stands for the vote in the run up to the Norton by-election.
The cabal also needed political power to control ZANU-PF and for that they had to rely on the former First Lady Grace Mugabe.
They got her by instilling into her the hell-fire scare that there were people out there ready end the rule of her husband well before the expiry of his term.
They also got her by promoting on her behalf that every single thing in Zimbabwe revolved around the First Lady.
So Jonathan Moyo decided the cabal would start pasting Mrs Mugabe’s images on publicly owned buses, on cars, print T-Shirts with her image; with the “Munhu wese kuna Amai” slogan.
Apparently the First Lady was overly impressed with these shenanigans, and up followed the idea that indeed she was the only one capable of taking over the ZANU-PF leadership from her husband; and that of the country.
She excitedly bought into that too, despite an apparent outcry from the generality of Zimbabweans.
The cabal needed to neutralise the revolutionary influence of war veterans within ZANU-PF, and to do that they needed a new enemy after the demise of Joice Mujuru.
In 2015 Jonathan Moyo quickly identified Emmerson Mnangagwa as the face of an enemy he so desperately needed if he was going to scare Grace Mugabe good enough to make her do the G40 bidding.
So he organised and granted an interview with the BBC Hardtalk programme in 2015, grabbing the opportunity to set Mnangagwa against the Youth League of ZANU-PF, and starting a smear campaign depicting Mnangagwa as “unelectable”, and also as a “murderer”.
Anyone that Jonathan Moyo dislikes is a genocidist or complicit to genocides, very little surprise there.
Joice Mujuru was a bit of an easier pushover because all she had was a contrived control power over ZANU-PF provincial structures — all prepared and done for her by Webster Shamu, then the national commissar.
Mnangagwa on the other hand proved to be a different ball game altogether.
Not only did the cabal find itself faced with a created enemy so much supported and backed by the war veterans community, but also one with so much institutional connection across the public sector, and one so intricately connected to the military and the security sector.
It was not long before Jonathan Moyo started crying foul about the “capture of state institutions” by Mnangagwa.
He had a counterplan.
He hastily manufactured historical significance and greatness around the character of Sydney Sekeramayi, asked his friend Ibbo Mandaza to organise a public lecture where he announced that Sekeramayi did not only have a more impressive liberation war history CV than Mnangagwa, but also that he was “an oasis of intelligence and humbleness.”
Poor Sekeramayi sheepishly obliged and ended up dancing his aged pair of legs to near death to keep pace with the proceedings at Amai Mugabe’s drama rallies.
The poor old fellow had to learn fast the various dance moves that the younger G40 kingpins choreographed so impressively at the countrywide political gatherings; gleefully smiling in anticipation.
Little did Sekeramayi know about Amai Mugabe’s growing personal ambitions, and by the time the veteran politician realised he was dancing his sorry legs to death for nothing, it was just too late to abandon ship and restore his legacy as a simple average liberation cadre in the history of the revolutionary party.
My friend George Charamba warned Jonathan Moyo in particular that ZANU-PF was a “thing with owners,” and that the owners were nowhere about to let go of their thing.
Moyo scoffed at wisdom as he normally does, and November 15 came to pass, as did the party Central Committee’s decision to restore ZANU-PF to its core values and goals, as did the mass march in support of both the ZDF and ZANU-PF, and as did parliamentarians as they eagerly gathered to debate and impeach the then President.
There was this rapture in the security sector, a rapture in political power, a rapture in public trust and support, and a rapture in legislative authority all at once. We needed to dig deep and quick on the next workable constitutional option.
President Mugabe came out to publicly dismiss claims that his power had been snatched by a military coup, saying all the military had done was to carry out a national security related operation.
He also agreed with the ZANU-PF’s Central Committee resolution to recall him, suggesting to be allowed to oversee the proceedings.
He agreed with the masses on their grievances, promising such would be looked at.
When Parliament sat to debate his impeachment, he probably realised that every thinkable current was flowing against him, and he resigned to allow a new transition.
Zhuwao thinks the whole country was duped by the ZDF, and he hallucinates about something he calls #2018Resistance; an imaginary army of disgruntled ZANU-PF supporters many enough to have ZANU-PF “thoroughly walloped and thumped at the 2018 elections.”
Wherever Zhuwao is holed up in hiding, he must be staying far too much on social media.
Like Jonathan Moyo, Zhuwao thinks Operation Restore Legacy, the mass march, and the parliamentary impeachment processes were all an attack on our Constitution.
He argues Grace Mugabe had won the “political contestation within ZANU-PF” by urging her husband to summarily fire his deputy Emmerson Mnangagwa; days after she had publicly said the former VP was a mere employee of her husband.
This is the kind of victory that needed protection by our cherished national Constitution, according to Zhuwao and Moyo.
In between elections the ruling party reserves the constitutional right to elect, select and appoint a successor President should the incumbent resign or vacate.
The incumbent resigned, regardless of the debate over the push factors before him. Resignations are always driven by push factors, and Cde Mugabe had his own push factors to quit.
His party was against him, so was his Cabinet, so was Parliament, and so were the hundreds of thousands of people who marched to press for his resignation.
While Zhuwao accuses the military and the populace of national conspiracy against “the will of the people”, Jonathan Moyo thinks it is G40 against the world; telling the BBC that there is an “international conspiracy” against constitutionalism in Zimbabwe.
Talking of the BBC, this is the organisation Moyo banned in Zimbabwe as a “terrorist organisation” in 2001. It is the same organisation he rushed to when he wanted to bash Mnangagwa in 2015, and the same organisation he has used to pretend to be defending constitutionalism in Zimbabwe today. The only consistent thing about Jonathan Moyo is his inconsistency.
Moyo and Kasukuwere presided over a litany of unfair dismissals and expulsions of political opponents within ZANU-PF. No charges, no hearing, no natural justice of whatever form: and the Politburo would be made to endorse.
Grace Mugabe on several occasions said the party had summarily expelled many youths just to hit at Mnangagwa, urging her colleagues to go for the godfather himself.
Jonathan Moyo and Kasukuwere firmly believed it was illegal for any ZANU-PF member to support Mnangagwa, or to be seen to be doing so; yet he now opens his yapper on BBC preaching about the legality of supporting Grace Mugabe, and the liberty of choice.
If indeed Jonathan Moyo has an idea what constitutionalism is, he would have known better than criminalising and expelling perceived supporters of his political rivals within ZANU-PF.
We cannot have a Constitution whose power to defend people’s rights is limited to the political preferences of colourful political charlatans like Jonathan Moyo.
Where was Jonathan Moyo’s knowledge about constitutionalism when a Politburo Committee was declaring him innocent on a matter before the courts based on its findings from a politburo’s point of view?
You are alleged to have embezzled public funds, the state comes after you, drags you to court; you go to your political party; your party sets up a committee to “investigate” you; clears you of all charges; tells the state to forget all about it; and the wife of the sitting President declares you “Not Guilty” at a political rally.
One day you end up somewhere on the BBC teaching the world on how best to respect national constitutions.
What rank hypocrisy!
Zimbabwe we are one and together we will overcome. It is homeland or death!
· Reason Wafawarova is a political writer based in SYDNEY, Australia