Mugabe risks losing privileges after political re-emergence

Mr Robert Mugabe

Mr Robert Mugabe

Zvamaida Murwira, Harare Bureau
Zanu-PF will have to meet soon to review the status accorded to former President Mr Robert Mugabe following his political activities that saw him being involved in the formation of a new opposition political outfit, the National Patriotic Front (NPF), a senior party official said yesterday.

Zanu-PF secretary for Legal Affairs, Cde Paul Mangwana, said in an interview that the former President risked losing Zanu-PF membership, constitutional privileges and respect for dabbling in opposition politics.

A fortnight ago, Mr Mugabe met Brigadier General Ambrose Mutinhiri (Retired), who fronts the NPF, at his Blue Roof mansion in Borrowdale, Harare, where they discussed the formation of the party, an outfit drawing membership mainly from members of the G40 cabal.

Cde Mangwana said the national constitution does not allow a former Head of State to dabble in active politics.

He said Zanu-PF would have to meet to consider Mr Mugabe’s legal status in light of the new development where he was involving in opposition politics and issuing statements that cast aspersions on the new dispensation led by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Last week, Mr Mugabe told a selected group of local and foreign journalists that the new Government led by President Mnangagwa was illegitimate, despite the fact that he tendered a resignation ahead of an impeachment on November 21 last year.

This subsequently saw the Zanu-PF Extraordinary Congress replacing him with President Mnangagwa.

Cde Mangwana said Mr Mugabe risked losing membership and the privileges he was enjoying.

“In the fullness of time, Zanu-PF will have to meet to discuss these new developments about the former Head of State and Government to review whether it is still necessary or not for him to continue enjoying the status we had given him,” he said.

“Ordinarily, a former President should play a father figure role and should not join active politics, particularly opposition politics.

“The party will have to decide. If the party is satisfied that he has violated that principle, he will lose his Zanu-PF membership, he will also lose privileges and immunities accorded to a person of a Head of State and forfeits the respect he was enjoying.”

Asked if Mr Mugabe was not allowed to exercise his right to freedom of association by supporting a political party of his choice, Cde Mangwana said the Constitution had to be read holistically.

“There are no absolute rights,” he said.

“The constitution confers people rights, but the same supreme law can take away those same rights in certain circumstances. Life, for example, is a right, but the constitution provides situations where one can lose that right to life.”

Zanu-PF secretary for information and publicity Cde Simon Khaya Moyo said President Mnangagwa had made a pronouncement regarding the conduct of Mr Mugabe.

“A few days ago, His Excellency President Mnangagwa was clear regarding that issue,” said Cde Khaya Moyo, who is also acting Minister of Media, Information and Broadcasting Services.

“I would not want to say anything given that our President has made a pronouncement.”

President Mnangagwa said Mr Mugabe was “entitled to express himself freely as is the case for any private citizen”, but he should realise the nation had since moved on.

Zanu-PF Matabeleland North provincial chairperson, Cde Richard Moyo, said Mr Mugabe had destroyed the 37 year legacy that he had built by hobnobbing with opposition politics.

“The new development is sad because we have supported him for the past 37 years,” he said. “If what we are reading is true, then he would have expelled himself from the party. As a province, we condemn him.”

Midlands provincial chairperson Cde Daniel Mackenzie Ncube said Mr Mugabe should be fired from the party for making “reckless statements.”

“As Midlands province, we condemn this kind of behaviour from a person whom we had reposed a lot of respect,” he said. “If he continues making such reckless statements we recommend that he be fired from the party just like his wife.”

Masvingo provincial chairperson Cde Ezra Chadzamira said the province was surprised by Mr Mugabe’s conduct.

“We no longer have that respect we used to give him as a father figure,” he said. “Younger generations have nothing to learn from that. He should be fired. No person is bigger than the party.”

In his interview, Mr Mugabe was quoted as saying while he might not have links with NPF, he will support the opposition party if it promoted what he said “the ruling party’s values”.

“My view is that if they think that the new party will represent the people better, that it will be democratic and avoid hypocrisy and falsehoods that are now characterising our government, and appealing to people in an honest way, I will support that,” he said.

“The NPF, any party that is for democracy has my support and the NPF has come to me and said they want to work towards correcting the present unconstitutionality and all the hypocrisy that is being said, we want that to go.”

 

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  • Sandura1

    Mr Mugabe must not forget the circumstances leading to his removal from the leadership of Zanu and Zimbabwe. He must be aware that he presided over the destruction of the this country, mass killings of civilians that have led to perpetual suspicion and acrimony amongst Zimbabwean tribes. His continued cling to Zanu PF leadership has led to the weakening of party through factionalism and defections. Zanu PF is at its weakest now because of his greediness. His management of the party led to the creation of G40, Lacoste, Gamatox etc. What organisation can really afford to lose such strong and tested cadres just because of one stupid,greedy old man? Mugabe has to behave.

    • sikhanyiso

      Thank you for this observation. If we are not clever even from his BLUE ROOF he will continue to destroy this country. His careless talk about Gukurahundi for example is meant to divide people further, seeing as they came together to boot him out. Let`s ignore him for a change and rebuild this our beloved country as united nation. Mugabe can go die for all we care- most of us won`t even attend his funeral. It`s unfortunate that even in the new trajectory there are still elements that are out to enrich selves and not build the economy in earnest. I just wish ED could promote devolution and stop this rot once and for all

  • Simon Muziwendoda

    Why should a party ,ZANU-PF make such decision should this not be in the constitution?I hope the party was not trying to “buy him out” with those obscene benefits.If it was then Mugabe is right to “refuse to be bought”. For the record I don’t support Mugabe and still support his removal

  • BonzoReChihuta

    Why should he lose privileges simply because he decided to exercise his rights? New order, not so new order, Cde ED!

    • musa

      new error by the EDiot

  • Joy

    Mugabe was misled by his wife and the G40 cabal, he still has not learnt anything from that. They continue to mislead him again

    • sikhanyiso

      I am not amused by people always blaming Grace for Mugabe`s fall. This man did things for himself. He has always been power hungry and greedy else he would have left in 1990!!!!!!

  • msana we ngombe

    Freedom of association is one of the rights brought by the independence struggle. The former president is also a beneficiary of that right.He has a constitutional right to support a party of his choice.( but not an office holder).
    Why should his benefits as enshrined in the constitution be determined by a political party? Those benefits come from taxes paid by all Zimbabweans irregardless of political affiliation.

    • Smoothy1

      Valid point. But I am a teacher. It’s not irregardless but regardless. Kikikiki

      • LihloLikazulu

        Who will teach the teacher….a combination of irrespective and regardless sometimes used humorously is irregardless…

      • TJINGABABILI

        THANK YOU! !!!!!!CORRECT!

  • QB

    At the first place when you granted him immunity is it constitutional. It is my understanding that since he is no longer in the reigns his immunity also expired we have a right to sue him if there be any or as there are many cases that need to be answered by him. This thing of elderly figure is just a way of hiding other hidden cases on certain individuals.

  • Mafukufuku

    We were initially told Mugabe was fired from Zanu together with his G40 cabal, were we misled? He is no longer president, therefore immunity must be out of question, he has to face the music for others not to commit crimes while in power and get immunity on retirement. This will set a wrong precedence.

  • God of War

    He has a right to support whatever party he wants. This so called new dispensation is proving to be not so new. They are liars and intolerant too.. For sure it’s a new error and we are still hopeless.

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  • Wikinerri

    Bvisai ruzhowa rweimmunity from prosecution

  • mthakhathi mugodyi

    For sure ZANUPF should expel Mugabe from ZANUPF. Mugabe has a right to approach UN, African Union and the US for sanctions and the world to condemn government as illegitimate. He has already called for an international media talk to say the government is a coup government like what Jonathan Moyo is writing to the world daily. This means he is no longer in ZANUPF. ZANUPF should formalise what Mugabe has expressed and endorse the expulsion. In politics you do not call it freedom of expression when you call government and your party illegitimate and call the UN, EU and the US to increase sanctions. Opposition parties can do that but not a ZANUPF member. He lied to the international community that ED betrayed him but did not talk about how he wanted to kill ED through poisoning and gun murder when he escaped on foot through Mozambique and Mugabe boasted–` ED you know you gona die..“

    • sinene

      And do you know that if someone else was saying all these things and Robert was still in power, all of us in Zimbabwe would be knowing how to spell the word treason. Why don`t they just charge him with it and place him where he belongs. Mugabe has this idea that he is feared and indispensable in this country. Can we prove him wrong the hard way.