Harare- Solomon Mujuru whose Chimurenga name was Rex Nhongo was one of the most dreaded liberation stalwarts, more so as the succession battle was then slowly wading into the picture; he was feared to be the real threat to former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, as well as anyone who harboured succession intentions.

Even Mugabe himself knew that Rex who died in 2011, because of his war credentials was the only man who could stand up to him. It was also widely known that Nhongo who was the then commander of the ZANLA forces played pivotal role in bringing Mugabe to the driving seat of the liberation forces.

Mujuru died under strange circumstances that still need answers to this day.

The authorities’ version of Mujuru’s death stirred more question than answers, many suspected foul play. According to the official version, Mujuru died from a mysterious fire that razed down a farmhouse he was in.

This was received with mixed sentiments, as Zimbabweans question how such a brave and well-trained army commander would die from a candle fire, with all the possible escape routes at knee level.

Some analysts are of the opinion that Mujuru was assassinated for fear that he would topple both Mugabe and his inner circle who were not as decorated as the late general.

While many alleged that Mugabe was the chief culprit in Mujuru’s death, it is also vital to note that other powerful forces in the ruling Zanu-PF party and government could also have played a part.

As alleged by Grace Mugabe, Lacoste faction(names withheld)wanted to topple, and succeed her husband since long time ago, if this is anything to go by, it could have made Lacoste an interested part in the puzzle.  

In the last two years of Mugabe’s reign, members of Lacoste faction were publicly ridiculed and humiliated on allegations that they wanted to stage a coup against Mugabe.

Decoding from these events and what later happened to Mugabe, it becomes clear that if  Lacoste faction wanted to takeover from Mugabe, then Solomon Mujuru could have been a stumbling block for their plan.

As such, the only way they could secure this brave and hazardous plan was to see to it that that Mujuru has been taken out of the picture.

The next step to be taken was making sure Joice Mujuru is fired from the ruling party under false treasonous allegations that she wanted topple and even kill Mugabe, this move again could not have been possible, had Rex been alive.

It was once even alleged by some ruling party bigwigs that Mujuru was involved in secret meetings with members of the opposition in order to take-over power from Mugabe.

Responding to those accusations, at one time former Mugabe confidante Didymus Mutasa lambasted how some ZANU PF officials posthumously denigrated the late general’s name.

In an interview with a local daily, Mutasa alleged that officials from the then Robert Mugabe led government seemed to be responsible for Mujuru’s death. He called for the officials especially those responsible for the dreaded secret service, the Central Intelligence Organisation to tell the nation how Mujuru died, contrary to the official version.

Another former ZANU PF bigwig Dzikamai Mavhaire also believed the late general was assassinated.

Even Joice Mujuru, the late general’s widow is on record saying it was a disgrace that ZANU PF officials were trying to discredit her late husband, taking into account his controversial death.

While Mugabe was the immediate beneficiary of Mujuru’s death, to some extent, Lacoste faction also took the death as a good riddance, or even played part. That is food for thought as the death mystery is yet to be solved. Only time will vindicate the innocent, while condemning the real murders.


In the next instalment: After Rtd Gen Mujuru’s mysterious death, Mugabe and his cabal saw it now safe to demote or fire Joice Mujuru from the ruling party and government, under false and treasonous charges that she was planning to topple or kill Mugabe…see you then

Peter Nyoni is a Zimbabwean businessman. He travels frequently between Harare and South Africa

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our guest writer, and do not represent the views of ZwNews.com