via Mugabe scoffs at Mujuru challenge – NewsDay Zimbabwe September 16, 2015
President Robert Mugabe has challenged former Vice-President Joice Mujuru to go ahead and form her political party and face him in the electoral ring come 2018.
BY XOLISANI NCUBE
Addressing a luncheon to mark the official opening of the third session of the eighth Parliament yesterday, Mugabe said he was not afraid of Mujuru as speculated in the media.
“The media is writing that I am afraid of this person, I am not afraid of Mai Mujuru. She caused problems for herself, she is now being propelled to the high levels, what has she done? If she wants politics, let her do it,” he said.
The Zanu PF leader accused the media of concocting stories that he was scared of Mujuru and at times “creating fights” within his party.
In a sign of an impending clampdown, Mugabe warned that journalists should not cry foul when his government introduces repressive media laws.
“If we begin to take control now — rigid controls — don’t cry foul. It is too much, they (journalists) are lying too much. We would want freedom, we want people to make money, yes,” he said.
“You don’t have to share my politics, but because you don’t share my politics and I don’t share yours, we don’t become enemies, no, we don’t. You may criticise me if I am wrong, sure, but don’t give me sins I would not have committed.”
Waving his fist in the air, Mugabe said Mujuru could not compete against him as his fist was stronger and had felled the late former Rhodesian Prime Minister Ian Smith during the liberation struggle.
“Now you are writing that she is fighting me. Haa haa, do you know this fist?” he said, drawing laughter from MPs and other government officials who attended the event.
“If you are dynamic and accepted by the people, well and good. The people will vote for you, but no violence please. Let people go wherever they want to go.”
Mujuru has been linked to a political party that will include former Zanu PF stalwarts like Didymus Mutasa and Rugare Gumbo among others who were fired from the party on allegations of plotting to overthrow Mugabe and replace him with his then deputy.
The People’s First team last week launched an economic blueprint, Blueprint to Unlock Investment and Leverage for Development (Build) – which has been dismissed by Zanu PF.
Mugabe also threatened to introduce severe jail terms on rapists.