Norton MP Temba Mliswa has thrown his weight behind vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa to succeed ailing nonagenarian, President Robert Mugabe, saying the Midlands god father was the only hope to ‘save suffering’ Zimbabweans.
Mliswa has somewhat reincarnated back into a Zanu PF sympathiser as witnessed by recent statements supporting Mnangagwa and urging youths to desist from criticizing the army.
Speaking at a press conference in Harare yesterday, Mliswa made a bold pitch for Mnangagwa, saying he had the capacity to turn the country’s fortunes and save the faction ridden Zanu PF.
“Zanu PF’s solution to the economic problem is for the President to step down and Mnangagwa, who is the most senior, to take over,” he said.
Mliswa’s tone has sent tongues wagging as to his sincerity of leaving Zanu PF, with analysts saying the firebrand politician was still entrenched in the ruling party’s politics and is now manifesting himself.
“Don’t call me a Mnangagwa person; unless there is someone more senior in Zanu PF than Mnangagwa, then you tell me.
“If Mnangagwa does take over, he is going to stop the bleeding in terms of people suffering. We must be cognisant that the people are suffering,” said Mliswa.
Mliswa’s recent statements that Zanu PF was instrumental in his Norton by-election win would confirm suspicions by opposition parties that the legislator was not singing the same song with other progressive movements.
He has in the past refused to support the National Electoral Reform Agenda (NERA) in their quest for electoral reforms.
Mliswa hipped praises on Mnangagwa who leads the Lacoste faction in Zanu PF saying the military were in support of his bid to replace Mugabe.
“Mnangagwa is the central man. He is the strongman of Zanu PF. He has the military supporting him. He has the war veterans supporting him.
As we know, the military is the last line of defence, not the CIO (Central Intelligence Organisation) and not the police,” Mliswa told journalists.
Mliswa’s endorsement of Mnangagwa is set to ruffle feathers in the G40 faction which reportedly has the support of the army and would move Mugabe to act quickly on replacing the Midlands godfather as he is known for showing the exit door to anyone tipped to succeed him.
Former vice president Joice Mujuru faced the full wrath of Mugabe when 10 provinces were in support of her ascendency to the country’s top job.
Mujuru was fired from the party in 2014 after the G40 faction plotted her downfall by passing a vote of no confidence and also getting rid of provincial chairperson fighting in her corner.
Mliswa’s remarks touched a raw nerve with G40 mastermind, Professor Jonathan Moyo who described him on his twitter as a ‘successionist’.
“This is a successionist fantasy that has all the trappings of a nightmare,” Moyo tweeted.
Moyo’s rift with Mnangagwa is not secret as the Higher and Tertiary education minister has often attacked him on his twitter account.
Although earlier Moyo had been happily tweeting pictures of Mliswa meeting Local Government minister Saviour Kasukuwere last week, he lashed out his fury on the Norton legislator.
Kasukuwere, the Zanu PF commissar, said Mliswa was daydreaming, vowing Mugabe would stay put and had already been endorsed by all the party’s structures to contest the 2018 presidential elections.
“His (Mugabe’s) service is a result of an overwhelming mandate from the people of Zimbabwe,” Kasukuwere said.
Endorsing Mugabe for the 2018 elections would be tantamount to ‘madness’ according to analysts as the 92 year old President has somewhat proved to be unworthy to lead the nation through a myriad of flopped economic policies like ZimAsset.
Mliswa said Zimbabweans should seek divine intervention for Mugabe to find the sense to resign.