UNDER Fire Vice president Emmerson Mnangagwa suffered a huge blow Friday after the ruling Zanu PF party suspended two of his top allies.
Gokwe-Nembudziya Member of Parliament, Justice Wadyajena, and Zanu PF’s Masvingo provincial chairperson Ezra Chadzamira were banned from ruling party activities with immediate effect.
The development came on the same day President Robert Mugabe also reversed the appointment Ray Goba as substantive prosecutor general.
Goba was appointed in September when Mnangagwa was still justice minister before losing the role in Mugabe’s cabinet reshuffle earlier this month.
The vice president, seen as keen to succeed the 93-year-old Mugabe, has been under-fire from ruling party rivals who are thought to have the backing of the veteran Zanu PF leader.
Mnangagwa was savagely attacked by First Lady Grace Mugabe recently, stoking speculation that a special congress suddenly called for December would see the vice president’s ouster from government and the ruling party.
The suspended Chadzamira and Wadyajena – Midlands’s youth league secretary for administration – are key members of the vice president’s Lacoste Zanu PF faction. The rival G40 group is thought to be led by Grace Mugabe.
The two Lacoste officials were charged with various allegations including “inciting rebellious behaviour” among party supporters.
The suspension letters were signed by the ruling party’s commissariat department which is headed by local government minister Saviour Kasukuwere who is also one of the G40 leaders.
Both officials were accused of “fomenting, propagating and inciting rebellious behaviour in the Party, churning out hate speech targeted on other party leaders and indulging in cheap social media gossip and lies that cause division among party members”.
The suspension orders also charged them with “uttering public statement that are grossly disrespectful of senior leaders of the party and making slogans that denigrate party leader”.
Zanu PF will hold an extraordinary congress before year-end ahead of crunch elections due next year.
Allies of Grace Mugabe are pushing for her appointment as vice president in a development that could see Mnangagwa’s ouster unless the party creates a position for a third deputy its aged leader.
President will seek another five-year-term in office next year when he would be 94-years-old. He has led the country since independence in 1980 and refuses to retire.