Former Matabeleland South governor Angeline Masuku says she does not lose sleep over claims by a Zanu PF faction that she harbours ambitions to be one of Zimbabwe’s vice-presidents.
BY XOLISANI NCUBE
Masuku — a war veteran — was attacked by members of the G40 faction, including First Lady Grace Mugabe’s deputy in the Zanu PF women’s league Eunice Sandi Moyo after she attended a war veterans meeting.
The meeting, where President Robert Mugabe’s leadership credentials were questioned, was held in Bulawayo and was addressed by war veterans leader Chris Mutsvangwa and his predecessor Jabulani Sibanda.
Moyo told State media that Masuku was eyeing Vice-President Phelekezela Mphoko’s post in light of proposed constitutional changes in Zanu PF to restore a provision that reserved one of the posts of Mugabe’s deputies to a woman.
However, Masuku told The Standard that those, who were attacking her were novices in politics. She said she was the second most senior female politician in the country after Jane Ngwenya, a former deputy minister.
“I just saw what is alleged to have been said by Sandi Moyo. I usually don’t comment on such issues because that is not my character,” she said.
“But let me tell you this, not in Zapu or Zanu, but the entire country, I am an old person both in age and political experience so I can’t be seen subjecting myself to talk about issues meant for children.
“If you look in the country, the only person who is older than me politically is Jane Ngwenya.
“She is the only source of wisdom and to whom I subject myself for counsel and not these other young children. I just look at them and hold no grudge.”
Masuku, a teacher by profession, joined the liberation struggle in 1963 and later became secretary for Bulawayo district during the colonial era before crossing into Zambia.
Two distinctive factions have emerged within Zanu PF, with one of them, G40 rabidly opposed to Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa succeeding President Robert Mugabe.
Moyo, who could not be reached for comment yesterday, is linked to G40, which enjoys Grace’s support.
Masuku said she viewed Moyo as a sister and had no personal grudge against her.
“I treat her like my sister so I am surprised of what is being written about her on me. Whenever I see her; I greet her with joy because from my upbringing and religious beliefs, I should not hate anyone,” she said.
“I have no war with anyone. I treat her just the way I treat people like Mutsvangwa or Sibanda. Nothing personal and I hope she does the same.”
Masuku added: “Even this afternoon, [Thursday] as I was entering the Senate chambers, I saw her and passed my greetings to her, so I don’t hold any grudge against her.
“I went to that meeting fully aware of what I was doing and believed in its purpose.”
Masuku was in 2014 accused by the Zanu PF Bulawayo provincial executive of plotting to topple Mugabe together with former vice-president Joice Mujuru .
She lost the central committee elections and has remained a party member.
Masuku was also accused of not being a Zanu PF supporter, as she was reportedly reluctant to wear party regalia.
After the 2013 elections, she was chosen as a senator for Bulawayo.