MAVAMBO/KUSILE/DAWN (MKD) leader Simba Makoni yesterday blasted President Robert Mugabe’s family for attempting to turn the country into a Gushungo dynasty following the recent elevation of his wife, Grace, into the ruling Zanu PF party’s top leadership.
Addressing journalists in Harare yesterday, Makoni, who served as Finance minister under Mugabe, said recent developments in Zanu PF suggested subtle plans by the veteran politician to anoint the First Lady as his successor.
He implored Zanu PF moderates to resist the move which he said was calculated to create a dynasty.
OPPOSITION Mavambo leader, Simba Makoni, has challenged President Robert Mugabe to break his silence and publicly defend his Vice-President Joice Mujuru and some of his top lieutenants who have been subjected to abuse by his wife, Grace.
Makoni, who was addressing a press conference in Harare, denounced the controversial first lady for being “disruptive and usurping the powers of the state president”.
Grace has over the past four weeks travelled around the country addressing Zanu PF rallies where she publicly attacked Mujuru and senior party officials for plotting against her husband.
She accused the vice-president of corruption and fanning factionalism in the party.
Top Zanu PF politicians such as Mashonaland East chairman, Ray Kaukonde, and Calistus Ndlovu, who chairs the party’s Bulawayo province, were not been spared the insults.
In addition, Grace also claimed that Makoni’s party was formed in Mujuru’s home.
But Makoni said Mugabe, who has maintained strange silence during his wife’s largely unpopular crusade, should stand up for once and protect government officials who are serving the nation at his pleasure.
“The President of Zimbabwe needs to come clean and open and defend his vice-president or act otherwise if he does not have confidence anymore in his vice-president,” he said.
“What is his position about all this because his ministers vari kusakurwa masikati machena ivo vakangonyarara ndosaka ndichiti kuda vari pamwe, asi hazvisi zvemhurika izvi, nyika yeZimbabwe haisi yemhuri. Ndeyedu tese.”
Since Grace Mugabe started her campaign, Mugabe has gone underground, surfacing only once to cap graduates at a state university.
“Does he approve of all the statements being made by Mrs Grace Mugabe, on matters of state and government?” Makoni asked.
The former finance minister also accused the first lady of “straying into the territory” of the State President after she dressed down cabinet ministers and other public officials during her countrywide tours.
Said Makoni: “Has he abdicated his responsibilities to the people of Zimbabwe, in deference to his wife? Is he condoning the disparaging remarks she is making about ministers he appointed, and whom he supervises?
“Is he acquiescing to, aiding and or abetting the paralysis of government by Mrs Grace Mugabe?
“We state here, even though it is apparent, that Zimbabwe is not a dynasty, and we call on the people of Zimbabwe, especially the leaders and other members of Zanu PF, to resist the dynastisation of our country,” he said.
Makoni also accused the first lady of disrespect.
“She complained when people were walking out of the stadium in Bulawayo and said it’s disrespectful but she is the first example of disrespect,” Makoni said.
“Everything she is doing is disrespectful of the people of Zimbabwe, of the head of state and government of Zimbabwe, of ministers of the government of Zimbabwe and all these people that she is haranguing.
“As private citizens they have a right to protect and defend their dignity; I would not sit there and be harangued in the manner that she is doing.”
Makoni further condemned Grace for her double speak for persistently accusing party rivals of using money to buy votes within the beleaguered ruling party while she carried with her bags of seed, fertiliser and food for distribution at her rallies.
The former finance minister further rebuked Zanu PF apologists who have vowed they will not let any Zimbabwean leader with no liberation war credentials to emerge and yet have allowed Grace, who was 14 when the country attained independence to lay claim to the Presidency.