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Mzembi accuses ZANU-PF of setting up Mnangagwa to fail

Former Zimbabwe Tourism minister Walter Mzembi, who is currently in exile in South Africa, has launched a scathing attack on the ruling ZANU-PF party, accusing it of setting up former president Robert Mugabe and current president Emmerson Mnangagwa to fail.

In a lengthy tweet posted on Sunday, Mzembi claimed that Mugabe was being given wrong or repetitive speeches, which contradicted reality and made him look like a disconnected head of state. He also alleged that Mugabe was made to trip physically, such as the airport incident in 2015, to discount his fitness for office.

Mzembi, who was expelled from ZANU-PF in 2017 for being part of the G40 faction that opposed Mnangagwa’s rise to power, said that leadership is about decisions, and that if a leader makes unilateral or kitchen cabinet decisions, the collective will trap and trip him.

He cited the example of the Presidential Advisory Committee (PAC), which was formed by Mnangagwa in 2019 to provide policy advice, but has since become inactive or critical of the government. He said that the PAC was a mistake at conception, as it assembled loyalists instead of fearless and frank advisors.

He also criticized the recent decision by Mnangagwa to appoint Commander of the Defence Forces, General Valerio Sibanda, as a politburo member, saying that it was a sign of either bad advice or lack of critical thinking. He said that whoever advised Mnangagwa on this move was an enemy of the state and was plotting against him.

He commended Mnangagwa for having the humility to stay the decision, which was met with resistance from some ZANU-PF members who saw it as a violation of the party’s constitution.

Mzembi’s tweet comes at a time when Zimbabwe is facing a deepening economic and social crisis, with inflation, unemployment, poverty, corruption, and human rights violations on the rise. The opposition and civil society have accused Mnangagwa of failing to deliver on his promises of reform and prosperity, and of using the military to suppress dissent.