Nqobile Tshili Chronicle Correspondent
THE Matabeleland South chapter of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association (ZNLWVA) has fired three officials for allegedly denigrating President Robert Mugabe and the First Lady and participating in an illegal meeting called by enbattled war veterans chairman Cde Christopher Mutsvangwa in Harare recently.
Matabeleland South war veterans provincial chairman, Cde Obedingwa Mguni, who is also the Deputy Minister for Home Affairs, treasurer Cde Smart Tshuma and secretary for women’s affairs Cde Otilia Sibanda lost their positions on Tuesday at a provincial executive meeting.
ZNLWVA’s Matabeleland South secretary for information and publicity, Cde Sipho Masuku, yesterday said Cde Tshuma and Cde Sibanda were fired from their positions for participating in a meeting that denigrated the First Family in Harare recently.
He said Cde Mguni was imposed by Cde Mutsvangwa as their provincial chairman when he was not a war veteran.
“We don’t want to be associated with people who insult the President and the First Lady. The three who were fired are part of those people who went to Harare to convene an illegal meeting. They can’t use Zanu-PF offices when they are demonstrating against the Zanu-PF government,” he said.
“We met with the national executive on Tuesday who endorsed our decision. We no longer want them in our offices.”
Matabeleland South secretary for security, Cde Gibson Siziba, weighed in saying the province will in due course hold elections to fill up the vacant posts.
“As Matabeleland South, we’re the first province to initiate a positive development and remove those who were fanning factionalism and supporting Mutsvangwa,” he said.
Cde Mguni was not picking up his phone last night while Cdes Tshuma and Sibanda were not reachable.
Cde George Mlala, a member of the War Veterans’ council of elders, on Monday said all members found guilty of insulting the First Family will fall by the way side.
Cde Mlala said Bulawayo is another province that needs cleansing and cited its provincial chairman Cde Cephas Ncube, who was recently quoted in the press defending Cde Mutsvangwa.
War Veterans Minister Tshinga Dube said over the weekend that it was his view that war veterans should convene an urgent meeting and elect a new chairman after Cde Mutsvangwa was suspended for three years by Zanu-PF.
Cde Mutsvangwa was sacked last Friday as War Veterans Minister by President Mugabe, a position now held by Cde Tshinga Dube.
In a parting shot, Cde Mutsvangwa launched a diatribe at the President, comparing him to a frog in a sink that “adjusts as the water gets hotter . . . to death.”
“The man I had trusted and served for 40 years was no longer there,” he said of his last meeting with President Mugabe.