President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s younger brother Patrick, and First Lady Auxillia have been sucked in the fights pitting Zanu PF heavyweights in the Midlands Province amid revelations that members of the recently elected Kwekwe district coordinating committee (DCC) have been using the influential duo’s names for political relevance.
Highly placed Zanu PF sources who spoke to Zwnews revealed that Patrick Mnangagwa, who manages the Zimbabwe leader’s Precabe Farm in the Sherwood area near Kwekwe town, has been working in cahoots with a camp loyal to new Zanu PF Kwekwe DCC chairperson Moses Thandika to fight a rival camp loyal to then Mbizo legislator, Vongaishe Mupereri.
Smarting from a humiliating defeat in the DCCs the Mupereri camp has the backing of Local Government minister July Moyo and his state security counterpart, Owen ‘Mudha’ Ncube.
The two cabinet ministers, who are President Mnangagwa’s most trusted lieutenants in Zanu PF, were in Kwekwe last week where they graced a one-day emotive DCC induction workshop attended by officials from the two feuding camps.
During the workshop, Minister Moyo publicly dressed down members of the Kwekwe DCC, saying they were not ‘leaders’, but mere ‘party activists’, instead.
Zwnews also understands that the predominantly Team Thandika new Kwekwe DCC which is believed to be financed by prominent gold dealer, Kandros Mugabe, has been working with the 77-year old Zimbabwe leader’s brother Patrick, to fight the rival Mupereri camp.
“Patrick has been feeding the Thandika camp with wrong information- giving them a false sense of support from the First Lady,” said a source privy to the internal rifts in the ruling party.
“But the truth of the matter is that Mai Mnangagwa has never been in support of that faction yet Patrick has been lying to them. In actual fact, the officials from the Thandika camp have been trying hard to get the attention of the First Lady who has been turning down their calls, instead,” the source said.
It is further alleged that party officials from the Zanu PF Kwekwe DCC have been taking advantage of Zhombe MP Edmore Samambwa’s proximity to Patrick, who has been giving them the assurance that they have the backing of Mnangagwa’s debatably influential wife.
Added the source:
“This is not the first time that Patrick Mnangagwa has been working against his brother. Not so many years ago, he was abandoned by the President after he sided with some G40 members who included former Midlands Governor Jason Machaya. It took the intervention of (Minister Moyo) and others for Patrick to be reaccepted back to Sherwood”.
The Zimbabwe leader is also said to have intervened in the intraparty fights bedevilling the Midlands after the septuagenarian reportedly made attempts at blocking Mugabe’s candidature in the Kwekwe DCC polls. Mugabe, an Archbishop at Zvipo ZveMweya church eventually triumphed against Tapiwa Muto for the position of Secretary for Finance in the hugely disputed elections.
“Initially Mnangagwa had called Patrick Chinamasa who was in Gweru overseeing the nomination processes and even ordered that Mugabe’s candidature be nullified although it remains inexplicably bizarre how he managed to participate in the DCCs”.
Although there was amplified disgruntlement from the Mupereri camp which cited rampant electoral malpractices in the DCC elections, particularly in the rural areas, the party okayed the victory of the Thandika camp.
“There was no way we could have a rerun of the DCCs in Kwekwe district since the president also comes from the town. So, the general consensus was that the results of the disputed polls in Kwekwe were going to stand but in reality the new DCC does not have absolute control over their area of jurisdiction”.
But, Thandika downplayed the alleged differences in an interview with Zwnews, saying the recent workshop was a move designed at ensuring that there was unity in the party ahead of the forthcoming harmonised elections expected in 2023.
At the party’s annual congress in Esigodini, the ruling party endorsed Mnangagwa as its presidential candidate in the next elections and raised the ire of critics who felt the former liberation war stalwart had apparently failed to convincingly fulfil his 2018 electoral promises.
At the time of writing, the ruling party’s provincial chairperson Daniel Mckenzie Ncube could not be reached for comment. Mugabe refused to entertain questions from this publication when contacted by our staffer.