HARARE – President Mugabe today appointed a 33-member Politburo and his two deputies, Comrades Emmerson Mnangangwa and Phelekezela Mphoko, who will also be the new Vice Presidents in Government.
The announcement of a new Cabinet set up is expected tommorrow, including those who will replace former Vice President Joice Mujuru who was booted out of Government alongside eight others for expending their time on graft, factional politics, and undermining the authority of the President whom they sought to depose or assassinate.
The President, who is also Zanu-PF First Secretary, made the announcement at the ruling party’s headquarters during an extraordinary meeting of the new Central Committee elected at the 6th Zanu-PF National People’s Congress which ended over the weekend.
He also abolished the post of national chairman and said his two deputies would take turns to chair party proceedings. Mnangagwa and Mphoko are expected to be sworn in as State Vice Presidents at State House in Harare tomorrow. The new Politburo announced yesterday, comprises the President and his two deputies who will be the Presidium, 22 heads of departments, committee members and also includes three deputy heads of departments.
Previously, the Presidium consisted of the President, his two deputies, the National Chairman and the Secretary for Administration. The President started by announcing the abolition of the position of National Chairman before naming the Presidium. “We are reducing that top heaviness, the two vice presidents have no real function except that they are my deputies and I can give them work to do.
“We feel it’s not necessary that if you have the two vice presidents you have the chairman. They can rotate so we want to do without the chairman,” the President Mugabe said. “At the top is President Mugabe. There are two vice presidents one of whom would be drawn naturally from Zapu and one from Zanu and from Zanu it is Emerson Mnangagwa and we say congratulations to him and from Zapu side it is Report (Phelekezela) Mphoko.
“It is the three who will be known as the presidium now, the rest would be heads of departments.” President Mugabe said a new department for war veterans, ex-detainess and ex-restrictees had been established to look at the welfare of the former freedom fighters.
Earlier on, President Mugabe had told the Central Committee and new Politburo members not to use their positions to devise sinister plots as done by former VP Mujuru and her cabal. “We are in the driving seat and we must actually drive and not use our headquarters to plot and destroy the party. We have taken action on some but we now do know how the machinery of Mai Mujuru was running through vaMutasa and others here at headquarters, but we too at the top we will be vigilant,” he said.
The Zanu-PF National People’s Congress amended the party constitution to allow the President to appoint his deputies and national chairman to kill factionalism by ensuring that the party has one centre of power. The practice of electing the vice presidents and others had become a breeding ground for factionalism, individualism and competing or multiple centres of power that afflicted Zanu-PF in the run up to Congress.
Former VP Mujuru and former ministers Didymus Mutasa (Presidential Affairs), Francis Nhema (Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment) Webster Shamu (Information Communication Technologies, Postal and Courier Services), Dzikamai Mavhaire (Energy and Power Development) Simbaneuta Mudarikwa (Mashonaland East Provincial Affairs), Nicholas Goche (Public, Service, Labour and Social Welfare), Olivia Muchena (Higher and Tertiary Education) and Munacho Mutezo (Deputy Minister Energy and Power Development) were dismissed from Government on allegations of corruption and plotting to topple President Mugabe.
Meanwhile, President Mugabe said he would be making further announcements today or tomorrow on the new Cabinet set up. “I will be making more announcements between tomorrow (today) and Friday to fill in the positions of the ministers we have withdrawn from duty. I can now say with regards to the vice presidents they automatically become the vice presidents in Government.
“These, I would want them sworn in on Friday vanofanira kutora mhiko dzekuzvipira, truly loyal,” he said.
Ignatius Chombo becomes Secretary for Administration, replacing Mutasa who failed to make it to the Central Committee, while former secretary for the Commissariat Webster Shamu was replaced by Saviour Kasukuwere. Kasukuwere was Secretary for Indegenisation and and Economic Empowerment in the last politburo.
The late David Karimanzira who died in March 2011, was replaced by Obert Mpofu for the post of Secretary for Finance, while the new Secretary for External Relations is now Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, replacing the late Stan Mundenge who died in October 2012.
CKembo Mohadi is now Secretary for National Security, taking over from Sydney Sekeramayi who is now Secretary for War Veterans, Detainees, Restrictees and their Welfare where he will be depitised by Christopher Mutsvangwa. The new Secretary for Transport and Social Welfare is now Oppah Muchinguri after relinquishing her post of Womens Affairs. She takes over from Nicholas Goche who was booted out of Government.
Former National Chairman Simon Khaya Moyo, takes over the post of Secretary for Information and Publicity, replacing Rugare Gumbo who was expelled from the party. Patrick Chinamasa assumes the post of Secretary for Legal Affairs, taking over from Mnangagwa who is now Vice President. Mike Bimha was appointed Secretary of the newly created post of Implementation and Economic Empowerment Policy, while osaya D Hungwe takes over the post of Secretary for Production and Labour which was held by fired Dzikamai Mavhaire.
The new Secretary for Health, Child Welfare and the Elderly is Cleveria Chizema, who took over from David Parirenyatwa.
The Secretary for Economic Affairs is now Christopher Mushohwe who took over from Mpofu. Grace Mugabe is Secretary for Women’s Affairs,while Secretary for Youth Affairs is Pupurai Togarepi, who took over from Absolom Sikhosana.
Secretary for Education is now Joram McDonald Gumbo, who took over from Sikhanyiso Ndlovu. Thokozile Mathuthu is Secretary for Gender and Culture, while Secretary for Welfare for the Disabled and Disadvantaged Persons is Joshua Malinga who took over from the late Stanley Sakupwanya who died in July this year.
Secretary for Land Reform and Resettlement is now Cain Mathema, taking over from Chombo, while ousted Dr Olivia Muchena was replaced by Jonathan Moyo who took over as Secretary for Science and Technology. Sithembiso Nyoni retained her post as Secretary for Business Liason and Development, while Prisca Mupfumira is the Secretary for Environment and Tourism.
Other politburo members are; Deputy for Secretary for War Veterans, Detainees, Restrictees and their Welfare, Christopher Mutsvanga, Deputy Secretary for Youths, Kudzanai Chipanga and Deputy secretary for Women’s Affairs Unice Sandi Moyo. The Committee members are Tsitsi Muzenda, George Rutanhire, Shuvai Mahofa and David Parirenyatwa.