Mugabe backed party collapses

…Grace VP dream up in flames

Photo: The Guardian

Moses Matenga

Former First Lady Grace Mugabe’s dream to revive her political career and those of G40 loyalists by forging an alliance between the National Patriotic Front and the MDC Alliance has all but come to a dramatic end after the party lost in the July 30 elections with only one of their members making it to the National Assembly.

Zanu PF won a two thirds majority in Parliament and has consolidated its power despite former President Mugabe’s maneuvers to divide the vote on the eve of the elections.

Speculation was rife that the Mugabe backed party would swing votes against the ruling Zanu PF party, especially after the long time Zimbabwe ruler endorsed opposition MDC Alliance presidential candidate Nelson Chamisa.

There was belief in political circles that the endorsement of Chamisa by Mugabe would see loyalists of the former President voting the youthful opposition leader in perceived Mugabe strongholds, particularly in the Mashonaland provinces.

It was however never to be as the National Patriotic Front only got a single seat in Kwekwe Central where Masango Matambanadzo emerged victorious over MDC Alliance’s Blessing Chebundo – (this is based on results announced by morning yesterday).

Mugabe told a press conference in Harare that he would never vote for his tormentors in Zanu PF neither would he vote for female candidates, MDC-T’s Thokozani Khupe and People’s Rainbow Coalition’s Joice Mujuru.

The NPF had its spokesperson and Mugabe ally Jealousy Mawarire standing in Hurungwe, its women’s league boss Sarah Mahoka standing in Hurungwe East, Shadreck Mashayamombe standing in Harare South, Agrippa Masiyakurima standing in Mutare North, Matambanadzo standing in Kwekwe Central, Lovemore Chibvura standing in Nyanga North, Kudakwashe Bhasikiti and Jeppy Jaboon standing in Masvingo provinces.

Mahoka recently was quoted as confirming an agreement of the NPF taking over the VP post in the event of an MDC Alliance victory amid claims the seat was being reserved for the former First Lady.

“We do not have a Presidential candidate as we go into this election. Our candidate is Nelson Chamisa and we will take the deputy President post,” Mahoka was quoted as saying.

That position was also reiterated by Mawarire who said Mahoka was speaking from an informed position.

This is not the first time Grace has tried her way to being Vice President.

All was set for her to be Vice President of the ruling Zanu PF party after  G40 lobbied for her elevation following the ouster of then Vice President Emerson Mnangagwa last year.

However, her dream was thwarted following operation codenamed “Operation Restore Legacy” in November last year that saw her and several other G40 kingpins being booted out of the party with Mnangagwa becoming President.

The poor show by the Mugabe party has sparked fights in the MDC Alliance with officials in the Welshman Ncube led MDC saying the move by the Chamisa led party to rope in the NPF members to contest in seats reserved for them was ill-advised.

MDC Alliance national chairperson Morgen Komichi recently said the move to rope in the NPF came after a realization that they had weak candidates hence the need to bring in perceived stronger candidates.

Former MDC -T councilor Warship Dumba said Chamisa scored an own goal in the dying minutes hence his impending loss.

“It was obvious Mnangagwa would win. For Chamisa it was an own goal in the dying minutes of a cup final,” he said.