Party deputy spokesperson Ephraim Masawi said the politburo was satisfied with the work of a co-coordinating committee tasked with sorting out the province that has been dogged by infighting and factionalism.
“Harare provincial elections will be held next Saturday,” Masawi said. “The politburo has ordered the elections.”
But sources in the politburo had earlier on told the Zimbabwe Independent that the restructuring of the province might not be completed in time for the December congress.
The sources said Harare was likely to attend the congress as observers with no voting rights as they did at the Youth and Women’s leagues conferences, where they almost fought each other over which faction should be allowed to attend the meetings.
Infighting between Hubert Nyanhongo and Amos Midzi, who are both vying for the provincial chairmanship, has affected the restructuring exercise.
Because of the infighting the province has gone for more than a year without a provincial executive.
The politburo member said: “We have not yet concluded the restructuring exercise. The exercise goes on. The problem with Harare has always been about individuals wrestling for power. The problem at the moment, it seems, is on tribal lines with the Zezurus saying Harare is their capital and they will not let a Manyika or Karanga take control of the province.
The elections had initially been pencilled in for August following the cancellation of the results of the previous poll held in December last year by the politburo, due to intra-party violence by the feuding factions.
Nyanhongo had defeated previous chairperson Midzi in a fiercely contested election that saw the two main factions led by retired army commander General Solomon Mujuru and defence minister Emmerson Mnagagwa seeking to gain control of the metropolitan province.
The politburo member said one of the biggest impediments to resolving the power struggle, which might spill into the Zanu PF congress, was the politburo, which was also deeply divided on factional lines.
Insiders at the party headquarters told the Independent that the succession race to replace the late Vice-President Joseph Msika was also affecting the exercise with factions trying to coerce party chairman John Nkomo to favour their side in exchange for a nomination for the vice-presidency post.
A person needs the support of at least six of the 10 provinces to be nominated vice-president. So far four senior members, Naison Ndlovu, Cain Mathema, Ambrose Mutinhiri and Obert Mpofu have openly declared their interest in the post.
Meanwhile, Zanu PF supporters from the party’s district coordinating committee 3 (DCC), which includes Rugare, Kambuzuma, Warren Park, Dzivaresekwa and Mufakose high-density suburbs, were protesting yesterday at the party headquarters against what they described as a biased restructuring exercise.
The supporters told the Independent that 16 districts have been set up, with Midzi’s supporters and some 23 districts in Nyanhongo’s stronghold being excluded.
When Mugabe arrived for the politburo meeting, the supporters sang songs denouncing the Midzi faction and politburo member Tendai Savanhu.