ZIMBABWE – Contrary to recent claims by President Robert Mugabe that People First was not a threat to Zanu PF events in Mashonaland East province tell a different story.
The Zanu PF provincial executive recently met in Marondera and resolved to pass a vote of no confidence on six senior members on charges of being part of the People First project which is reportedly fronted by former vice president, Joice Mujuru.
Among the six are three MPs: Tendai Makunde of Murewa North, Felix Mhona, Chikomba Central, and Washington Musvaire MP for Maramba Pfungwe.
Three others members are George Katsande, Taurayi Pasirayi and Boniface Mutize.
A clearly panicking provincial leadership led by chairman Biggie Joel Matiza, has also called for further investigations into other members on similar allegations.
They are Simbaneuta Mudarikwa, the MP for Uzumba, Amos Chiota (Seke), Marble Kuwandikiza, a proportional representative MP, Sithembile Makamba and Joyce Chiroodza.
An insider said contrary to Mugabe’s claims during the Victoria Falls Zanu PF conference that the People First project was a nonstarter, the yet to be launched party was in fact causing problems for the ruling party.
To make matters worse, it is not only the named Zanu PF officials who are campaigning for the People First; we have senior officials from the MDC-T like Farai Nyandoro and other members from that party who are now part of the People First movement, a source claimed.
Nyandoro is the former MDC-T mayor for Marondera Town.
Sources said the Zanu PF provincial executive was in a panic mode and is not listening to Mugabe but instead to his wife, Grace.
At a well-attended rally held at Murewa Centre in the province recently, Grace warned Zanu PF officials to be vigilant as the People First officials were recruiting members.
She nailed former Zanu PF provincial chairman Ray Kaukonde, saying he was at the fore front of the recruitment drive.
She said Kaukonde, Mujuru and the People First were busy recruiting people ahead of the 2018 elections and warned Zanu PF to ignore them at their own peril.
I hear the Mujuru demon is still in the province. We hear that Kaukonde is busy giving people money. Please don’t receive dirty money, Grace told party supporters last month in Murewa.
The enemy is still there. I hear that children who are 15 years of age are being targeted because they do not know the history of this country. Zanu PF is being used by people to make money.
“There are people who join Zanu PF to use the party to make money but are People First. They are being paid to spy. There is a demon in Mashonaland East,” Grace said.
The First Lady further threatened to deal with Kaukonde “until he gets tall”.
Kaukonde, a businessman who was expelled from Zanu PF early this year, has dismissed as madness reports that he was part of the People First party.