A Zimbabwean minister has reportedly challenged President Robert Mugabe to name or groom his successor in-order to put a stop to the continued factional fights in his ruling Zanu-PF party.
Two distinct camps have emerged in Zimbabwe’s revolutionary party in recent years, as factions seek to outwit each other in the race to succeed the 93 year-old leader. Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa is allegedly leading a faction that is angling to succeed Mugabe calling itself “Team Lacoste”, while another grouping made up of young Turks, commonly known as Generation 40 and backing First Lady Grace Mugabe to succeed her ageing husband, wants to torpedo Mnangagwa’s presidential ambitions.
Although both Mnangagwa and the First Lady have publicly denied harbouring presidential ambitions, the ructions in the revolutionary party have now become synonymous in Zanu-PF politics.
According to NewsDay, War Veterans Minister Tshinga Dube urged Mugabe to “groom his successor to end the factional fights within Zanu-PF and prevent possible chaos”.
Dube said that the out spoken war veterans were often misunderstood when they spoke about Mugabe’s possible successor.
“There is nothing wrong with talking about the succession. Succession is not a crime to talk about. This happens in every country. All what the war veterans are saying is that he must groom the next leaders so that whatever happens to him, or when h retires there is somebody we know,” Dube was quoted as saying.
Several war veteran leaders were expelled from Zanu-PF last year following a rare public rebuke against Mugabe’s “dictatorial tendencies”. They also accused him of presiding over a declining economy.
The veterans of the country’s 1970s liberation war, normally staunch allies of Mugabe, vowed at the time that they would not support him if he sought re-election in 2018.