Opposition squabbling benefits Zanu PF: Analysts

via Opposition squabbling benefits Zanu PF: Analysts – NewsDay Zimbabwe November 9, 2015

Continuous purges in Zanu PF will likely disintegrate the party, but confusion and more squabbling in the opposition camp will make it impossible to break the hegemony of President Robert Mugabe’s outfit, analysts have said.

by Everson Mushava

Despite claims by the Zanu PF winning factions that the purges would cleanse and solidify the party, political analyst, Alexander Rusero said the purges were, in fact, the genesis for worse problems for Zanu PF.

He, however, warned that the Zanu PF hegemony would continue because the opposition had its own share of problems to seize the opportunity of Zanu PF’s infighting and wrest power.

“The continuous purges in Zanu PF are an indicator that the centre can no longer hold. It can be a genesis of the disintegration of Zanu PF, as it will cause despondency among party members,” Rusero said.

“But with the disarray in opposition politics, it will be a matter of which Zanu PF faction consolidates power to perpetuate the party. Infighting in Zanu PF is actually a clear message that the party thinks they are done with the opposition.”

Zanu PF, for more than a decade, has been locked up in serious internal fighting. This has resulted in the purging of former Vice-President Joice Mujuru, who was believed to be leading one faction, while the other is reportedly led by Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

However, the firing of Mujuru and over 200 members aligned to her faction has failed to douse the flames of factionalism, with First Lady Grace Mugabe now reportedly aligning herself with a faction of the Young Turks called G40, to fight the Mnangagwa faction.

The continued infighting has triggered a fresh wave of purges on members aligned to the Mnangagwa faction, with Manicaland province being the hotbed. Last week, acting Masvingo provincial chairman, Paradzayi Chakona was booted out, two weeks after Mashonaland Central youth leader, Godfrey Tsenengamu had been fired.

On Friday night, Mashonaland East provincial chairperson, Joel Biggie Matiza was also shown the exit door. All these are reportedly aligned to Mnangagwa.

Researcher and political analyst Dewa Mavhinga said: “Continuous purges will ultimately destroy Zanu PF because they are in themselves not about strengthening the party, but about getting rid of possible successors to Mugabe without decisively resolving the succession issue.”

Mavhinga added: “Purges do not resolve the succession problem. They make it worse and with time, the infighting can only get more vicious. The best way to strengthen the party would have been to democratically allow for succession without purging people and without pushing for a family dynasty.”

He, however, said the opposition would unlikely seize the opportunity and take over power because they had their own battles to fight as well. He said the opposition was in itself obstacles to democratic change.

Political analyst, Takura Zhangazha said Zanu PF had survived many internal fissures since the time of the liberation struggle, and the current infighting would likely be in the form of a configuration rather than a genesis to the end of the revolutionary party.

“It’s a configuration of power, not disintegration. Whatever Zanu PF faction wins, it will be in control. Zanu PF will not disintegrate, it will configure after in the post-Mugabe era,” he said.