Source: Zimbabwe People First still shepherdless | The Financial Gazette April 6, 2017
TWO months after the Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) dramatically split right down the middle, the other faction jointly led in the interim by Didymus Mutasa and Rugare Gumbo is still to identify a shepherd.
The faction’s elders are, however, hopeful that a visionary leader would be found to steady the ship.
ZPF disintegrated in February after its leader, Joice Mujuru, broke ranks with her top officials.
Mujuru has since formed her own political outfit called the National Peoples’ Party, with Gumbo and Mutasa scouring the political landscape for a young, energetic leader to pick up the pieces.
“We are still looking for a leader. We are still calling on for people who are interested to come forward,” said Gumbo on Monday, adding that some prominent individuals whom he could not name had shown interest in the job.
“We are trying to avoid a leader who is self-centred and above current political shenanigans. We are looking for a leader who understands the local and international economy; someone of sound mind and not an opportunist; someone who can unite Zimbabweans.”
In the days of the ZPF fallout, speculation was rife that Norton legislator, Temba Mliswa, could be appointed interim leader until the party’s congress.
While Mliswa has expressed eagerness to lead the party, its elders have denied ever engaging the controversial former Mashonaland West ZANU-PF provincial chairman in discussions.
ZPF is yet to hold its inaugural congress, which may not be anytime soon given that the party still needs to rebuild its structures in the wake of the fallout.
“We need to consolidate our structures first before we go to congress. We are building our party slowly,” said Gumbo.