President Emmerson Mnangagwa bans cellphones

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa has reportedly banned Zanu-PF politburo members from bringing cellphones to party meetings.

According to Daily News, party executives were last week told to leave their electrical gadgets – including mobile phones – at the entrance of the Zanu-PF headquarters.

They were also searched on their way in.

Analysts said the move was a clear sign of “deep mistrust within the ruling party”, adding that this risked the party sliding into the old order when Mnangagwa’s predecessor Robert Mugabe also banned the use of cellphones at party meetings.

NewsDay reported in June last year that Zanu-PF introduced a security scanner at the entrance into the boardroom, where everyone, excluding Mugabe, left their phones at the door.

Insiders said at the time that Mugabe had been unhappy that politburo deliberations were being leaked to the media verbatim, raising fears meetings were being recorded using cellphones.