President Robert Mugabe allowed Vice-President Joice Mujuru to chair Friday’s Politburo meeting, disregarding demands by his wife Grace, who called for Mujuru to resign from her position immediately.
BY MOSES MATENGA
The move was interpreted by senior Zanu PF offices as a vote of confidence on Mujuru and a rebuke on Grace who had demanded that she be “baby-dumped” for alleged incompetence, corruption and plotting to remove Mugabe from power.
Sources told The Standard that Mugabe further distanced himself from Grace’s antics by meeting her privately before the meeting started.
Mugabe arrived at Friday’s politburo meeting around 11am and met the party’s secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa. He is said to have met Mujuru before she came to chair the meeting.
Mugabe joined the meeting later, sources said yesterday.
Politburo members told The Standard Mugabe was angry at outgoing Women’s League boss Oppah Muchinguri telling her to stop the “fire” she had started.
Muchinguri is the one who invited First Lady Grace Mugabe to take over the Women’s League, triggering a chain of events that resulted in Grace holding countrywide tours where she denounced Mujuru and other senior Zanu PF officials.
Mugabe is said to have also requested to see Information minister Jonathan Moyo. Sources said he wanted to lash at him for using the state media to attack Mujuru and other senior party officials.
Zanu PF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo could neither confirm nor deny that Mugabe met Mujuru privately over the matter, but was quick to accuse Moyo of harbouring a destructive agenda warning that the party leadership was going to deal with him.
“I don’t know whether they met or not but it can be possible,” Gumbo said.
Asked why there were conflicting statements over what really transpired in the meeting, especially regarding Temba Mliswa’s fate as Mashonaland West chairperson, Gumbo said:
“Are you not aware of Jonathan’s hand. It is his mischief. What I said is there in the papers and the reporters are doing their best but it is his mischief. He is on a destructive mission. The leadership will however deal with that.”