By A Correspondent- Zanu PF is working flat out to block former Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions, Peter Mutasa from chairing the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition, ZimEye has learnt.
Sources privy to the development confirmed that the ruling party has since recruited some members of the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition to derail Mutasa’s ascendancy to the post of chairing the CiZC.
Confirmed the sources:
“Zanu PF activists with the help of the rowdy Crisis In Zimbabwe Coalition members were behind the disruption of the CiZC AGM after it became clear that Mutasa was headed for victory.”
Mutasa became a thorn in the flesh for Zanu PF during his days as the President of the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU) where he openly endorsed the opposition movement MDC.
“The state worked hard to ensure he loses the Presidency during the trade unions congress held in October 2021.”
The new ZCTU President Florence Taruvinga romped to victory after polling 73 votes against Mutasa’s 59.
Added another source:
“Zanu PF invested huge amounts of money to ensure Mutasa loses the ZCTU Presidency. The same modus operandi was employed during the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition AGM held in Bulawayo on December 15, 2021.”
The source alleged that a group of Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition members led by Pride Mkono and Leo Chamahwinya (ZimRights) employed violent tactics to disrupt the voting process at the Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition AGM. This was after it had became clear that their preferred candidate, Samuel Wadzai was headed for defeat.
“They had to regroup during break time and that is when the strategy to use violence was mooted. There is a group of the Crisis Coalition members who had been given money by State security agents to ensure Mutasa does not clinch the post of Chairperson. It is true that money exchanged hands and that same money was used to hire thugs to disrupt the voting process.
“Zanu PF fears a strong Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition under the leadership of Mutasa hence they are working hard to derail his ascendancy to the post of Crisis Chairperson,”
The source added that Wadzai was viewed as a weak candidate by Zanu PF but this remains largely unknown to him.
Controversial activist, Pride Mkono who fell out of favour with the US Embassy after embezzling Young Africa Leaders Initiative (YALI) funds is widely believed to have links with state security agents and who was at the centre of wars that rocked Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition some years back is believed to be at the centre of the Zanu PF ploy.
His task is mainly to mobilise and cause divisions that would lead to a weak leadership of the Coalition.
Mkono is part of the smear campaign against outgoing Crisis Chair Rashid Mahiya and the Coalition at large.
“The plot is to ensure that Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition members are divided and this is being fronted by Mkono and Chamahwinya. So there are members pushing the Zanu PF agenda quite aware of what is going on while others are in the dark but pushing the same agenda.
Zanu PF is keen to weaken civil society ahead of the 2023 elections hence their concerted efforta to weaken Crisis Coalition which has been instrumental in the fight for democracy in Zimbabwe, ” said the source.
It has also emerged that Masvingo United Residents and Ratepayers Alliance leader Anoziva Muguti is also part of the ploy and is reportedly trying to manipulate his Information Officer, Godfrey Mtimba, who is also a Journalist to write stories decampaigning Mutasa.
It could however not be immediately established if Mtimba was engaged. ZimEye is however in possession of a whatsapp chat suggesting that Mtimba must be engaged to counter and decampaign Mutasa. (see attached screenshot).
Said Wadzai Mangoma:
“Godie ngaanyore tomuona meaning Godie must write and we will appreciate him.”
Sources alleged that a member of the donor community, identified as Jack Zaba is also part of the Wadzai camp and is believed to be the Kingmaker in the camp and was in Bulawayo on December 15 canvassing votes for Wadzai.
It is alleged that Zaba has been calling some organisations promising them funding from NDI should they vote for Wadzai.
Senior government officials including George Charamba and Nick Mangwana are working hard to derail Mutasa’s campaign.
At one time ahead of the Crisis AGM, there was an attempt to arrest Mutasa ahead of the Crisis AGM and sources said that after this strategy failed, Zanu PF resorted to infiltration. ”
“This is a call for Crisis in Zimbabwe Coalition members to resist infiltration and manipulation. The Coalition needs bold leadership and members should not fall into the trap of Zanu PF working in cahoots with rowdy members.
Generally Crisis Coalition members are agreed that they need a leader of the calibre of Mutasa and despite efforts to convince them, the Wadzai camp remains resolute with their plot and this could be because of the reason that they have to account for the money from Zanu PF and also the fact that there are Zanu PF proxies that have been recruited to ensure the Coalition is weakened ,” added another source.
Efforts to get a comment from Mkono and Wadzai was work in progress by the time of writing.