via Politburo: Bob backs no one, but Croc mauled – NewZimbabwe 10/02/2016
PRESIDENT Robert Mugabe met with his bickering lieutenants for a marathon 10 hours on Wednesday and, going by the statement issued at the end of the gathering, the veteran leader chose not to back either of the two rival Zanu PF factions.
But in the one-upmanship contest between the group reportedly rallying behind vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa and the G40 faction said to back First Lady Grace Mugabe, the latter group might have reason to brag.
War veterans showed no fight after threatening to block claimed G40 man, Jonathan Moyo, from attending; the higher education minister turned up to no incident.
Again, Grace and top ally Kasukuwere brought to party headquarters hundreds of supporters under the cover of praising Mugabe for his stewardship of the African Union as chairman.
Legislator and key Grace ally, Sarah Mahoka, was then somehow allowed to give Mnangagwa a bloody nose.
“You will die in a house,” Mahoko told the gathered supporters in remarks directed at the vice president.
“These things you are seeking will get you killed. We support the President and the leadership chosen at congress.
“We are not saying Mnangagwa should be removed but he must not sit there like a duck while his people violate us.”
She then demanded that Mnangagwa respond and declare his political ambitions.
The VP, known as ‘Crocodile’, merely ignored her.
Mugabe, apparently, did not order a stoppage of hostilities between the groups; if anything the Zanu PF leader possibly established the rules for his succession fight.
According to a statement by party spokesman Simon Khaya Moyo, leaders were banned from discussing or emoting about party business through the press or social media.
Ahead of the meeting, Mnangagwa’s allies had demanded the expulsion of Jonathan Moyo for using Twitter to attack the vice president. They also wanted party officials banned from using social media.
For their part, G40 had also raged against Mnangagwa allies for corralling State media to their cause.
This was after war veterans’ leader Chris Mutsvangwa – an ally of the VP – used state newspapers to attack Moyo who appeared to been denied an opportunity to respond.
But in his statement read after the meeting, Khaya Moyo said Mugabe ordered party leaders not to discuss Zanu PF business in the media – all media formats.
“Expressing oneself through the Press, including the use of social media must stop with immediate effect,” Khaya Moyo told reporters after the meeting.
“Leadership calls for responsibility and not for rumour-mongering and insults. The party has structures and procedures to be religiously adhered to.
“The party is not run through the Press, so we are not allowing any member of the party at whatever level to run the party through the Press. We must maintain and safeguard our party principles and we must never lose focus so said the President.
“We must always exercise introspection and check within yourself whether what you are saying is based on any facts. In life, there is always room for compromise should you have any differences.
“There must be some degree of maturity based on the party’s principles and procedures. There must be constructive talk all the time.
“In other words, do not just engage in discussions without being constructive and therefore, talk must be guarded.”
As for the party divisions themselves, Khaya Moyo merely repeated the usual discouragement of factionalism.
“Factionalism must never be allowed in the party because we only have one centre of power. The party’s motto is unity, peace and development.
“Contradictions are possible in such a massive party but these must never be antagonistic as has been happening recently. Difference of opinion must never be perpetuated at any given time.”
The rest of the party spokesman’s briefing related to reports submitted by the various politburo committees.