Former Vice President Joice Mujuru’s Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) says it has already grown bigger than President Robert Mugabe’s Zanu PF, which is riven by deadly and seemingly unstoppable tribal, factional and succession wars.
The party’s spokesperson Jealousy Mawarire said ZPF had grown “in leaps and bounds” since its inception early last year — resulting in Zanu PF “quaking in its boots” and trying to lure Mujuru back to the ruling party ahead of next year’s eagerly-anticipated national elections.
He described “misplaced hopes” that Mujuru would return to Zanu PF, as was articulated by a State media columnist at the weekend, as “completely delusional”.
“Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) has grown bigger than Zanu PF. It is impossible for someone like Mai Mujuru, who started a political party that is now bigger than Zanu PF, to contemplate going back to the same Zanu PF which is disintegrating everyday.
“Indeed, even if she were to go back to Zanu PF, which Zanu PF would she go back to, because there are so many splinter groups in that party now? There is Lacoste, G40, the Grace group, Mugabe and his group and then expelled war veterans on the other hand,” Mawarire said.
“Mai Mujuru left Zanu PF on her own accord on December 1, 2014. She went and bid Mugabe farewell and told him that she was happy to leave Zanu PF for good.
“She was happy that she was leaving Zanu PF clean and not guilty of any of the allegations of corruption that were being levelled against her,” he added.
In her state of the nation address last week, Mujuru said the country’s mooted grand coalition — which is set to be in place later this year — would bring to an end Mugabe and Zanu PF’s long rule.
“My fellow citizens and countrymen, the Zanu PF government has failed. It has shown that it lacks the commitment to implement programmes that better the generality of our people.
“We agree with the sentiments which we gathered from the interactive discussions we had with the people during our nation-wide tour. Your message was loud and clear, that it’s time for Mugabe to leave office,” Mujuru said.
“As ZPF, we believe a grand coalition should not only quantify votes, but should bring our people together. It should be a process capable of fostering convergence and national healing. A process of such magnitude should also be people-driven and guided by the need to build like-minded synergies among various stakeholders,” she added.
Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai and Mujuru have been working behind the scenes to form an electoral pact which includes some smaller political outfits.
Sources close to the ongoing coalition talks have confirmed to the Daily News that there was now “an agreement in principle” between Mujuru and Tsvangirai about the two working together — with talks with another opposition leader, Welshman Ncube apparently set to be concluded soon.
“We are of the idea that the process of building the coalition should be an all-inclusive process that is not only limited to political actors, but one which would include private citizens, the churches, civic bodies, student movements and any other interested stakeholders genuinely committed to the democratisation of our politics and the holding of free and fair elections.
“After touring the country’s 10 provinces, we are more than convinced that the people of this great nation want change and they are ready for it.
“The people in the Diaspora want change in order to come back home to their families and friends, and also to help their country.
“Fellow citizens, we need a renewal of our minds, a change, and a vast paradigm shift in the way we do things. In order for this change to be realised, we need a fresh leadership with the will to work for the betterment of our people.
“We need a leadership with the craft competency to effect a turnaround that we desire, a leadership with a clear vision of making our country a first world,” Mujuru said further in her address last week.
Analysts have consistently said that a united opposition, fighting with one purpose, would bring to an end Mugabe’s long rule — especially at this time when the country’s economy is dying and the increasingly frail nonagenarian is battling to keep his warring Zanu PF united.
Since Mujuru joined hands with Tsvangirai and marched with him in the streets of Gweru in August last year — in a rare public display of unity among the opposition — there have been growing calls by fed up citizens for the formation of a grand opposition alliance.
SOURCE :DAILY NEWS