Gumbo’s career over

Rugare-Gumbo-a1.jpg

ZANU PF party spokesperson Rugare Gumbo’s lengthy suspension from the ruling party by the politburo last night, along with other allies of Vice President Joice Mujuru, all but brings to an end his long yet controversial political career in which he worked alongside the late Herbert Chitepo in Zimbabwe’s 1970s struggle for Independence.

Herbert Moyo

Gumbo, the only surviving member of Zanu’s Dare re Chimurenga which planned and directed the liberation war while President Robert Mugabe and other leaders like Ndabaningi Sithole were in prison, was handed a five-year suspension by the politburo on charges of plotting to oust Mugabe.

Given his age (74, having been born in March 1940) this effectively marks the end of his controversial career. This is the third time Gumbo finds himself at the crossroads with the party he worked tirelessly to build up alongside the likes of Chitepo, the late Josiah Tongogara and the late Kumbirai Kangai, among others.

Gumbo was first arrested by the Zambian government after the assassination of Chitepo along with Tongogara and other Dare members on suspicion of assassinating Chitepo.

He was also later arrested and imprisoned in Mozambique along with other members dubbed the Vashandi group who were resisting the elevation of Mugabe to party president to replace of Sithole who had fallen out of favour allegedly for renouncing the armed struggle, among other charges.

He was only released in 1979 on the eve of the elections that lead to Independence on the insistence of the British as one of the pre-conditions for the holding of the elections that led to Independence in 1980.

He contested the elections on a Zanu Ndonga ticket — the party led by Sithole.After Mugabe’s victory, Gumbo was frozen out and remained in the political wilderness for many years in which he worked in the corporate sector. He was later rehabilitated by Mugabe and given ministerial positions at the turn of the millennium, including as Minister of Economic Development in 2005 and later Agriculture minister in 2007. He also served in the party central committee and politburo leading to his appointment to the spokesperson portfolio.

While he has previously picked up the pieces, it is highly unlikely that he will recover from his political setback this time given that he will be 79 years old at the expiry of his suspension in 2019.

Gumbo’s departure all but marks the collapse of Mujuru’s own designs for the presidency as he was her most brave fighter in the party, defending her at crucial periods when she was under siege.

22 thoughts on “Gumbo’s career over”

  1. moe_syslack says:

    Not over. They will reverse it tomorrow. When dictators operate they hear so many footsteps they are even scared of their own shadows. Won’t last.

    1. Chris Veremu says:

      I am inclined to agree with you…This does not look like it is over..not one bit!

  2. analyst says:

    shame on Gumbo.gumbo wakairasa,talking about succession whilst mugabe is still alive??

  3. neni says:

    Gumbo is a spring chicken at 74, all of sixteen years shy of 90. He must just wait it out!

  4. Wilbert Mukori says:

    WE SHOULD SEE RUGARE GUMBO FOR WHO HE REALLY IS – A BLUNDERING NATIONALIST WITH NO MORE BRAIN THAN A RAT. TAKE THE PRESENT SITUATION, FOR EXAMPLE, IF GUMBO AND ANY OF THE MUJURU FACTION LEADERS HAD ANY BRAIN THEN THEY WOULD HAVE REALISED THAT MUGABE DOES NOT HOLD FREE, FAIR AND CREDIBLE ELECTIONS; THEY HAD JUST SEEN WHAT THE TYRANT DID TO MDC IN 2008 AND 2013 FOR PETE’S SAKE; AND TAKEN APPROPRIATE ACTIONS. THEY DID ABSOLUTELY NOTHING; THE SAT THERE LIKE CABBAGES JUST WAITING TO BE PICKED. WELL THEY WERE PICKED OFF ONE AFTER ANOTHER!

    PEOPLE LIKE GUMBO WERE IN THE STRUGGLE FOR SELFISH REASONS AND THE COUNTRY IS IN THIS HELL PRECISELY BECAUSE OF PEOPLE LIKE HIM. NOW THAT HE HAS BEEN KICKED OUT, IT IS GOOD RIDDANCE! THE IDIOT HAD NO VISION AND WILL NOT BE MISSED! INDEED IT IS THE DEPARTURE OF SUCH SELF-SEEKING CLOWNS AND TYRANTS THAT WILL ALLOW THE NATION TO LOOK FOR QUALITY LEADERS WHO WILL GET THE NATION OUT OF THIS MESS!

    1. Murenga1 says:

      Are you slowly turning into a Mugabe supporter and believer Mukori? That would be good news indeed 🙂

    2. King Tubby says:

      I have no sympathy for Rugare Gumbo. He used to froath at the mouth, denying the existence of factionalism in ZANU PF. Now he is outside the gravy train, Madyirapazhe ave kudyira pazhe where he belongs

  5. Gabarinocheka says:

    Why can’t he also write some form of memoirs like Cde Dzino? That will be an interesting book to read…..

    1. Wilbert Mukori says:

      Interesting thought that; I wonder whether he will attribute his own final demise to sanctions imposed by the west!

  6. bobsled says:

    Herbert Moyo ounds like Jonathan Moyo. Gumbo’s career will be over when he decides so. Here is someone who is standing up against a lifetime dictator who has messed the country in 34 years of non¨-stop madness and all you can stay is his career is over. Instead of encouraging someone who is pointing out that Mugabe has overstayed and messed you write like a Mugabe recruit. Munozoda vatungamiri vanemaguts kubva kudenga here when you fail to recognize and encourage people like Gumbo. No wonder the country is in a mess—and hopeless.Futseke wako

  7. Mberengwa says:

    Oh my homeboy from Mberengwa East, I supported you purely because my enermy’s enermy is my friend. Well, temporarily maybe. Your camp provided the needed checks and balances we so desperately needed at this point in time with these hyenas circling on the carcas that is Zimbabwe! Surely will Ngwena have his way just like that? Hell no, stand up for once and fight you moron! I hate Zanu with passion but on this one ndoku supporter benzi iwe!

  8. Mberengwa says:

    Oh my homeboy from Mberengwa East, my enermy’s enermy is my friend although I hate Zanu and everyone associated with it with passion. Your faction at least provided the needed checks and balances to these hyenas readying for a kill. For once Gumbo stand up and fight you silly man! Your faction is a better devil than these hyenas for the country.

  9. Sober says:

    Mr Gumbo made some serious blunders that he will regret. Being in mai Mujuru’s faction as you indicated was supposed to give him more reasons to be tactiful and reasonable. What he showed the nation is that he is so power hungry that he can’t wait for the suitable time to celebrate that is after victory.
    Whilst the private media is trying to make him a hero it is evident that before independence this man was working for the British.

    Now that he is out do you think mai Mujuru will stoop that low to follow him? In Zanu (PF) you fire the juniour first and that will be the end of any rebellious act. Remember Prof. Moyo who sacrificed on the same alter. Its goodbye to Madyira (vaGumbo) unless he repents and come back as a true patriot.

    1. bobsled says:

      What true patriot? Isn’t 34 years long enough a wait to replace old Bob? Stop abusing me!

    2. Abbie says:

      Really? Gumbo worked for the British doing what exactly? When you make that kind of allegation it is important to substantiate. When you say he should have been tactful, and reasonable what do you mean? What did all who were suspended do wrong?

      Whilst I don’t believe Gumbo should have gone back to Zanu P.F. given it’s lack of democracy which had resulted in him and his colleagues being incarcerated in dungeons in Mozambique, what evidence is there that he was power hungry?

  10. Petros Magomazi says:

    @Sober. I am astounded and disappointed that we still have people who are living in the past and who think like we are still in the 80’s. Gumbo for all his blunders (which you need to chronicle) was man enough to say things as they are. There is no greater patriotism than standing up when others choose to grovel and pretent to be happy with the status quo. If people had listened to him before independence who would not be in this mess. Now we have built a personality cult around the President and he is now above the constitution of the party. If you look at what is happening, you will realise that none of the Ministers is spending time dealing with issues of the state, they are all busy politicking while Zimbabwe is burning. There is no national interest in all these shenanigans. It is a big shame that even some of our educated people in the party are failing to stand for the truth and remind the party and President that it is about the people (patriotism): people first and not political expediency.

    1. Chikopokopo says:

      Yes Rugare might have met his fate but is it taboo to talk about succession when we are all fully aware that all humans are mortal. I think he is forward looking. It was healthy to allow succession debate and the selection modalities within the party than to stifle the debate. The consequencies of not allowing free debate will result in a lot of political uncertainty. ZANU PF is a very big movement and is much bigger than any one individual. A clear succession plan is healthy for any country, company or organisation. I do not think that there is anyone threatening to unseat the President but we have people who are ambitious to succeed the President when his hour of reckoning comes, which might not be very far anyway. What we are seeing now is a creation of a kitchen cabinet and I bet it will only last as long as the H.E. lasts. After his demise the party will have serious fissures than we are witnessing now.

  11. kalulu says:

    It is interesting to note that people have indeed different opnions which should be appreciated and supported, however, I do not understand some of the criticisms being directed at Gumbo. Here is a man who was trying to fight dictatorship of Mugabe from within making references to the party constitution which does not bar eligible people within the party to challenge for leadership posts. How can he be ‘called power’ hungry when he was merely supporting the candidature of a party and Government vice president who was advised by President Mugabe to aim higher than being a vice president when she was elevated or elected to become vice president in 2004. The congress is the rightful time and place to contest for leadership posts in the party. What is wrong with supporting one’s favourite candidate at the congress to remain vice president or to challenge for a higher post especially if the incumbent is now over 90 years old. Is doing so a treasonous offence and if so where is democracy in ZANU PF. Even though I am not a member or supporter of this ‘fallacy’ called zanu pf which should rightfully be called ZANU ‘MUGABE’ I just felt that I shoud join the debate of the ‘goingson in this ‘falsehood’ as it is not every one in it believes in the satus quo. ‘

  12. It is wonderful for people to hold divergent views. However, being Zimbabweans that we are, we should understand that no matter how different our views will ever be, we should disagree yes, but above all remain friends.

  13. Wezhira Wezhara says:

    Please Let us not make this guy out to be a hero…this is not a man who stood against Dictatorship but a man who thought he had a chance to grab power as part of the so called ascendant faction twice and failed…twice…You are fooling yourself to think of Gumbo and his team had prevailed either in 1978 or in 2014 they would have ushered in democracy and prosperity…If anything they simply wanted undhindered access to the gravy train….good riddance…This guy has been part of groups willing to use violence to grab power…such people can never be democratic

    1. Chen Chikezha says:

      Grabbing power is part of politics and Mugabe has overstayed his usefulness even in Zanu but none has balls to challenge him. It is people like him, Cephas Msipa and Jabulani Sibanda who have refused to be Mugabe’s wives unlike the rest. Even Munangagwa knows that Mugabe has overstayed his welcome but cannot tell him in his face, if you doubt this ask Prof Jonso. saka @Wezhira forget this sellout thing because we know Mugabe never fought in the struggle as well.

  14. moe_syslack says:

    That where Zanuoids have it wrong. Public service (be it president or minister or whatever) is not a career but a job. When your job is done you go back to your career as a teacher, lawyer or whatever. Zimbo politicians don’t know any other career but dithering as blind politicians. Can you honestly picture Mugabe teaching? Herein lies the root of our problems. These people can’t function outside of politics. It’s all they do. Pathetic really.

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