via Zanu PF factionalism ominous for Zim – DailyNews Live 3 APRIL 2014
Every Zimbabwean ought to be very concerned by both the escalating level and the brutal tone of factionalism within President Robert Mugabe’s party.
Zanu PF is, after all, not just our country’s long-ruling party, it is also the political formation that has previously boasted of having “degrees in violence” — and gone on to act savagely on these threats.
Add to this frightening history the fact that the party’s leader also the only leader that our country has had since independence in 1980 — is a very mature 90-year-old (and reportedly ailing) and it becomes easy to appreciate why what is happening within Zanu PF should concern all right-thinking Zimbabweans.
Let us be very clear, factionalism is a phenomenon currently associated with virtually all political parties in Zimbabwe. But it is the extent and the implications of Zanu PF’s internal strife for the country that demands that the nation pays particular attention to the goings-on in the party of liberation.
Indeed, and with due respect to opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai’s MDC, Zanu PF is not the MDC. As mentioned above, and notwithstanding the controversial circumstances within which it retained power last year, Zanu PF is the ruling party.
In addition to running this country with an iron hand, Zanu PF leaders, unlike those in the MDC, have unfettered access to state resources, as well as to the military, our partisan police and the country’s dreaded intelligence services.
And as has been repeatedly recorded by history, the undeniable truth is that bigwigs in the party are prone to abusing their incumbency and access to instruments of power whenever their power base is threatened.
This is why all right-thinking Zimbabweans must be very concerned by the worsening and vicious plays for power within the party.
As an analyst that we quoted in our lead story yesterday so colourfully put it, the nastiness of factionalism in Zanu PF makes the MDC’s much reported factionalism “look like a Sunday picnic in the Harare Gardens”.
Yes, things are that bad in the ruling party, to the extent that some political observers are genuinely worried that we will soon witness heightened and serious intra-party violence, ordered hits and murders, as well as a complete breakdown in government service very soon. It is frightening.
Zimbabweans have over the past few months got a glimpse of what maybe in store for the nation as the nasty factionalism within the party has increasingly boiled over into open war, amidst stunning allegations and counter-allegations of corruption within the party and the government.
The latest to fire a deadly salvo at his colleagues is maverick Hurungwe West legislator, Temba Mliswa, who spectacularly fingered Justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa in “Mafia” activities on Tuesday.
Surely, all these kinds of internecine wars can only end badly for the players involved, their party and Zimbabwe as a whole.
But why are these internal Zanu PF wars worsening and threatening to get out of hand altogether?
It is hard to give any definitive answer to this question without bringing President Robert Mugabe into the equation — particularly given that the health of our 90-year-old leader continues to be a subject of much public speculation.
To this extent, Zimbabweans will be well within their rights, in the absence of official information, to read in between the lines and surmise that perhaps Gushungo is not as fit as is sometimes claimed, a scenario that could be driving the current mad (or is it murderous?) scramble for power and resources.
Finally, it is also worth observing that the leadership argy-bargy within the MDC probably derives from the factionalism and instability within Zanu PF.
It is very possible that some elements within Tsvangirai’s party are sensing the ruling party’s nervousness around Mugabe’s continued tenure as the country’s leader, and are, therefore, beginning to gird themselves for what they ostensibly think will be an easier tilt at power in a post-Mugabe Zimbabwe.
For Zimbabwe’s sake, we hope we are wrong.