ZANU PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa has been lobbying the party’s provinces to support him for the contentious chairmanship position likely to be vacated by the incumbent Simon Khaya Moyo who is heavily tipped to take over as Vice-President following the death of John Nkomo in January.
Herbert Moyo/Elias Mambo
Party insiders say Mutasa, who was part of a four-member team that was set up by the politburo to investigate factional fights in the provinces, took advantage of the meetings with the provincial and district leadership to lobby for the chairmanship.
“Mutasa took advantage of the probe team’s visits to the provinces and lobbied for the chairmanship post,” a senior Zanu PF official from Masvingo said this week.
When contacted for a comment, Moyo said: “I think it is better for you to contact him (Mutasa). I am sure he will be able to talk to you.”
Since the unity accord was signed in 1987, the Zanu PF chairmanship has been held by former Zapu members — the late vice-presidents Joseph Msika and Nkomo and now by Moyo.
Mutasa told the Zimbabwe Independent on Wednesday that there has been a misconception on the chairmanship position.
“Due to the fact that the post has been going to the former Zapu officials, everyone thinks it is reserved for those from Matabeleland,” Mutasa said.
“The next chairperson will be decided by the people. The only post reserved for the former Zapu people is the vice-presidency. The national chairperson is chosen by all the provinces,” he said without divulging his interest, preferring to say “if it comes to Manicaland, it will be the people’s choice”.
This is not the first time that Mutasa has expressed interest in the chairmanship.
Moyo, who was Zimbabwe’s ambassador to South Africa, won the 2009 nominations, but Manicaland province accused the party of having a “misconception” that the national chairperson should come from the Matabeleland region.
The Zanu PF Manicaland provincial chairperson at that time, Basil Nyabadza, resigned in protest claiming there was no provision in the Unity Accord, which stipulates that the chairperson should be from Matabeleland.