via Mutasa shed crocodile tears for Kangai — Nehanda Radio by Tatenda Mabasa OCTOBER 5, 2013
MUTARE – ZANU PF politburo member Didymus Mutasa allegedly shed crocodile tears during the death of Kumbirai Kangai as it emerged that the self-proclaimed godfather of Manicaland was preoccupied with nicodemous kangaroo meetings to select a “loyal replacement” of the national hero ahead of his sworn enemy and former CIO boss Shadreck Chipanga.
Nehanda Radio can exclusively reveal that Mutasa held a string of meetings before the burial of Kangai – who died on August 24 – with politicians from Buhera, Chipinge, Chimanimani and Makoni to circumvent the constitution and Electoral Act by amending the party list of candidates on the senate in a bid to block Chipanga from replacing Kangai.
Chipanga, is a shrewd politician aligned to the Mnangagwa faction that includes Finance Minister Patrick Chinamasa and Oppah Muchinguri who are fighting against Mutasa for the control of Manicaland and Mutasa believes letting the former spy boss landing the powerful post would further threaten his already weakening grip on power.
In a case of sour grapes, Mutasa has put Kangai succession process on halt close to about three weeks since the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) declared the seat vacant. Sources in Zanu PF told Nehanda Radio that Mutasa is opposed to having Chipanga as Kangai’s replacement.
They said Mutasa has instigated the politicians from Buhera, led by maverick Buhera South legislator Joseph Chinotimba to make a special request to have Kangai’s post filled by Amai Kangai on compassionate grounds.
If that fails, Mutasa is comfortable having any of his loyalists – Soul Nzuma and Tapuwa Zengeya as a replacement.
“Mutasa is a man of encyclopedic ignorance, and as the nation was mourning Cde Kangai, he was preoccupied with looking for a replacement. He is applying brakes on Chipanga, who together with Muchinguri and Chinamasa, he accuses of not supporting his quest to land the Vice Presidency.
“He has also tried hit the former CIO boss below the belt by coming up with a nasty petition – bearing the names of vendors – portraying Chipanga as a black sheep whose ascendency lacked the necessary backing of the people of Makoni and Manicaland. The plan is to use the request by the “people of Buhera” and the fictitious petition as the basis to assassinate Chipanga’s character,” explained a Zanu PF insider.
Chinotimba took up the request at a recent Zanu PF provincial executive meeting at Marymount, where it got muted response.
“Chinotimba was merely a mouthpiece. He was airing Mutasa’s views. Mutasa feels threatened by the prospects of Chipanga landing an influential post, he does not want to have another of his enemies to rise to power as this will add to his woes,” said another Zanu PF source.
“A replacement must have been made by now, but Mutasa is using his power as the secretary general of the party to frustrate the whole process. He is sitting on the correspondence from ZEC, which has since declared the post vacant, while mobilizing petitions against Chipanga so that he doesn’t land the post.”
Nehanda Radio understands this has put Mutasa on a collision course with the no nonsense Zanu PF Manicaland provincial leader General Mike Nyambuya – who was quoted by the weekly Manica Post as saying they will not brook any pressure from politicians pushing for amendment of the party’s senatorial candidates list submitted to ZEC.
ZEC on September 13, 2013 declared that the senatorial seat held by Kangai was vacant, thereby paving way for Zanu-PF, the party that held the seat, to nominate a name to ZEC in terms of the constitution and the Electoral Act.
In terms of the law, party listed seat vacancies do not necessitate by-elections involving registered voters.
Nyambuya said his executive was aware of a ploy by the likes of Mutasa to coerce them to circumvent the constitution and Electoral Act by drawing a new list of candidates to fill the vacant senatorial seat.
Section 157 (1)(c) of the Constitution says any vacancy in a party-list seat must be filled by a person belonging to the same political party, and of the same gender, as the person who previously held the seat.
This means, Kangai’s seat must be filled by a male who belongs to Zanu-PF, explaining why the crusaders have added the likes Nzuma and Zengeya as possible replacements after Amai Kangai.
“It is incorrect for them to patronize the seat as belonging to Buhera. Senate seats were not allocated according to districts, but were based on the number of votes a particular party gets from National Assembly in a given province.
“There are sentiments from some cadres that the seat be retained by someone from Buhera, but as you know the constitution takes precedence over politics. Zanu-PF submitted a party list of three women and three men to ZEC and we have to replace Cde Kangai with another man on the list, not with a woman as being suggested in some quarters.
“The names of male senatorial candidates we submitted to ZEC had Cde Kangai, myself and Cde Shadreck Chipanga. Now that Cde Kangai is no more, we have to revert to the same list and see who is next, and the automatic successor is Cde Chipanga. It is as easy as that and we have already communicated that position to ZEC,” said Nyambuya.
Nzuma confirmed an interest in the post.
“The people of Buhera have made a special request that the vacant post be given either to Amai Kangai or someone else from the district. We do not feel we are succeeding in the first plan so we there is a new list of male contestants, who include myself, now eyeing the post. Ngavachingondipawo zvangu kuti Buhera ive nechiremererawo,” said Cde Nzuma.
ZEC chief elections officer, Mr Lovemore Sekeramayi, made the announcement in a Government Gazette published on September 13.
“It is hereby notified that the Commission has received notice of a vacancy that has occurred among the party list members of the Senate. The public is, therefore, hereby, notified, in terms of Section 39(4) of the Electoral Act (Chapter 2:13), that there exists a vacancy in the Senate following the death on the 24th of August, 2013, of Kumbirai Manyika Kangai, a duly elected Senator for the Manicaland province,” read the notice.