BY MOSES MATENGA
A Zanu PF faction said to be sympathetic to Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga is alleged to be behind several manoeuvres seen as targeted at President Emmerson Mnangagwa amid revelations that war veterans will roll out protests against the government this week.
Infighting has intensified in the ruling in the run-up to the party’s national conference that begins in Bindura this week with different factions jostling for the control of the ruling party.
A Zanu PF activist Sybeth Musengezi last week approached the High Court challenging Mnangagwa’s ascendancy to the presidency after the coup that toppled Robert Mugabe in 2017.
Insiders said the lawsuit by Musengezi was part of a multi-pronged fight back by the faction sympathetic to Chiwenga, which is taking Mnangagwa head-on over unfulfilled promises that date back to the coup.
They include protests by a Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association faction that will begin this week to coincide with major Zanu PF activities that include the conference and campaigns for the removal of sanctions against the country.
Amos Sigauke, one of the leaders of the war veterans group, said they will hold their protests in Harare.
“We are marching from Africa Unity Square, Munhumutapa, Parliament, Ministry of Defence and Judiciary,” Sigauke said.
“We are getting $16 000 and are dying poor yet they lie to us that we will have mines and land.
“Only a few are benefitting and those national heroes they declare die poor.
“They glorify us when we are dead.
“There is massive looting and corruption going on and all that must end.
“Belarus and Chinese nationals are taking over and it is like we are reversing the land reform programme and compensating white farmers when others are getting reparations. “
He added: “I think these are the people we heard were surrounding the (former) president and are still here with us. These are the issues we are demonstrating about.”
In August, nine war veterans, Faith Chananda, Wonderful Kabarauta, Isso Madzivanyika Daphne Kanoti, Mazikana Marron, Nyasha Mangena, Sthyine Maphosa, Shorai Nyamangodo and Jordan Mberadzina were arrested outside Finance minister Mthuli Ncube’s offices while protesting against low pensions.
ZNLWVA leader Chris Mutsvangwa accused a former Zanu PF faction known as G40 and the opposition MDC Alliance of engineering the arrests .
Mnangagwa allegedly ordered the release of the war veterans, who were accused of doing Chiwenga’s bidding.
War veterans were instrumental in the coup against Mugabe with a faction led by Mutsvangwa organising a series of protests against the government.
Zanu PF spokesperson Mike Bimha downplayed the clashes between Mnangagwa’s government and war veterans, saying as far as he was concerned, the former fighters were happy with the performance of the new administration.
“I don’t know where these war veterans are coming from because in our meetings with their leaders, they are upbeat about what the party is doing to them,” Bimha said.
Zanu PF youths on Friday demanded the amendment of the constitution to allow Mnangagwa to rule for more than two terms in another move seen as targeted at Chiwenga, who is said to harbour presidential ambitions.