Youths defend territory

Source: Youths defend territory | The Herald June 8, 2017

Felex Share Senior Reporter
The Zanu-PF Youth League yesterday said it was unhappy with senior party members in various provinces seeking recognition by interfering in the organisation of their rallies with President Mugabe. The youths said senior party members were now taking a leading role in the organisation of the rallies and inviting youth provincial members to the meetings.

The youths said they were the ones hosting the meetings with the President, and should be in charge of all the arrangements, including inviting other party organs.

The complaints come after senior party members in Manicaland, led by Provincial Affairs Minister Mandi Chimene and suspended acting chairperson Cde Samuel Undenge, convened a meeting on Tuesday to prepare for President Mugabe’s visit to the province on June 16.

The youths from the province yesterday said senior party members seeking recognition had taken over preparations for the meeting.

Mashonaland West province also held a similar meeting this week, where senior officials were calling the shots.

Zanu-PF Youth League secretary Cde Kudzanayi Chipanga said in an interview yesterday that senior party members should leave the youths to manage their affairs.

He said other Zanu-PF wings should play a complementary role for the rallies to be a success.

“We are there to complement each other,” said Cde Chipanga. “As youths, we are against any senior leader who isolates the youths in various provinces, as well as those who want to have leading roles with a view of settling their scores with other party members,” he said.

“To all those thinking that they will have an opportunity to address the rallies to settle personal scores or who are approaching the programme with dirty hands, let them know from today that the platform is for one person, President Mugabe, and they should take their hands off. Senior leaders should come in with material and moral support, but in terms of management, it is a jurisdiction for the youths.”

Cde Chipanga said party wings were not there to outdo each other, but the youths wanted to express their grievances to their leader, President Mugabe, without interference.

“These meetings are being organised by the youths like we do with the 21st February Movement celebrations and last year’s One Million Man March,” he said.

“The Youth League should take a leading role in the organisation of these meetings. All other party wings are welcome to complement our efforts, just the way we do to them. We are not there to outshine each other,” he said.

“We should use Mashonaland East as a template because we never had problems as senior members were there to guide us. The leaders respected the youths and we had a successful event. That is our expectation in all the provinces.”

President Mugabe began his meetings, dubbed “Presidential Youth Interface Rallies” last Friday, with a rally in Marondera.

The Zanu-PF First Secretary will be in Manicaland on June 16 before visiting Masvingo.

President Mugabe will have an appreciation of the challenges faced by the youths during the rallies, which are also being used to launch the Zanu-PF Youth League’s campaign for the 2018 harmonised elections.

The engagements are expected to run until October.