President Robert Mugabe attacked State Security minister Kembo Mohadi during last week’s Zanu PF politburo meeting following the Beitbridge strongman’s visit to controversial Malawian prophet Shepherd Bushiri’s church where the minister was told he was about to get a promotion, it has been revealed.
BY XOLISANI NCUBE
A video of a timid Mohadi being told that he was bewitched by people from Borrowdale and Chitungwiza went viral on social media last week and the issue was immediately linked to the battle to succeed Mugabe that is raging in the ruling party.
The former Home Affairs minister has been linked to a faction backing Vice-President Emmmerson Mnangagwa.
According to some reports, Mohadi is being tipped for the post of vice-president if Mnangagwa eventually succeeds Mugabe.
Zanu PF officials who attended the party’s politburo meeting in Harare last week said Mugabe had a go at Mohadi.
“The president said although he has his own faith and beliefs and respects individual decisions and it was everyone’s right to believe in whatever they want, believing in such kind of people [Bushiri] was a mockery,” one source said.
“He said it was irrational for people of sound mind to approach such prophets and take their prophecies seriously.”
Mugabe is a Catholic. In 2014 he fired his long-time deputy Joice Mujuru after accusing her of consulting Nigerian witchdoctors to plot his death so that she could take over power. Mujuru challenged the 92-year-old leader to prove his claims.
Bushiri’s “prophecy” that Mohadi could soon wear a “crown” could have angered Mugabe, the sources said. Mugabe told the minister that he should not put his life and political career in the hands of prophets, the source said.
“The president did not only mock Mohadi, he went on to chastise Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa for having his name dragged into the prophet fiasco,” said another source.
“To use his own words, the president said ‘Ahh vakomana, kutoteerera zvimapurofita zvenyu izvi? Munhu akafunda chokwadi? Ahhh, imika imi’ [surely you pay attention to these prophets, learned people like you?]
“We all looked down because no one could laugh, you wouldn’t know what the targeted people would say tomorrow.”
Bushiri, who is said to be one of the richest people in his native Malawi, claimed Mohadi was being targeted by rivals who were now lining up witchdoctors to stop his imminent rise.
“But none of them shall prosper. I am seeing somebody holding a spear targeting that man [Mohadi], and this man is visiting all these witchdoctors and you have been going through a lot and the Lord has been protecting you,” he said.
He also promised a beaming Mohadi that, “I am seeing money coming to you.”
The preacher then gave Mohadi a white handkerchief, which he said the minister should use each time he felt under threat and if he used it to pray, he would receive miracles.
Before the 2014 controversial Zanu PF congress was tauted as one of the possible vice presidents on a Zapu ticket — but he lost to Phelekezela Mphoko.
Last week a group of youths advertised a business seminar alleging that Bushiri would speak and Mnangagwa was set to be the guest speaker.
The event was cancelled at the last minute even after the venue — at a top Harare hotel — had been secured.
Bushiri also disassociated himself with the breakfast meeting.
Mohadi and acting Zanu PF spokesperson, Ignatious Chombo could not be reached for comment yesterday.