AS the 2008 presidential and 2010 parliamentary elections draw closer, internal Zanu PF reports indicate that 10 of the party’s 12 provinces are faced with serious factionalism that threatens to divide the party.
The reports, communicated to the party leadership during the just- ended Zanu PF national conference, state that Mashonaland East and Central are the only provinces unaffected by factionalism.
A Zanu PF “National Security” report that looks at the state of the party nation-wide says factionalism is so rife that it has an effect on the very existence of the party.
The divisions have prompted the central committee to recommend that the party restructures from cell to district level in all provinces ahead of the presidential election due in 2008.
“Factionalism is rife in most provinces with the exception of Mashonaland East and Central. If there are any differences within the ranks of the party leadership of the two provinces, it is minimal and of no consequence to the party,” says a summary of the state of the party.
The report further states that in most cases there are two factions in each province while other provinces have more than two.
According to the report, the leaders of each faction in each province are known and can easily be identified.
“In most cases there are two factions in each province, though in other provinces there might be more. The leaders of each faction are known and can be identified without any difficulties,” the report says.
Zanu PF is fraught with factionalism that dates back to the early 90s but the latest fragmentation was accentuated by the succession issue that saw six provincial chairpersons suspended for allegedly plotting against Joice Mujuru’s rise to the post of vice-president.
As a result, two camps emerged with one camp backing Mujuru while another was rooting for former speaker of parliament, Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The report, divided into several sections, also assesses Zanu PF’s strengths, the security situation around the country, activities of minority parties, the recently held senatorial elections and the strained relations between Zanu PF and the international community.
The party report says voter apathy, corruption within its ranks and protest votes are some of the problems undermining Zanu PF.
“However, the weakness of the party, which has also become its major threat, is its continued failure to effectively destroy factionalism, voter apathy and protest votes within its ranks. The party should be exemplary in dealing with corrupt leaders within its ranks, as failure to do so would seriously erode its fortunes through mistrust,” the report says. — Staff Writer.