ZANU-PF Politburo members wept and refused to eat dinner after revelations that Joice Mujuru was plotting to assassinate President Robert Mugabe, a politburo member said on Sunday.
The stunning claims were made by Zanu-PF politburo member, Claveria Chizema, during a party inter-district conference held to prepare for this week’s congress.
“It was the Mujuru camp that demanded for a candid discussion on the assassination claims and President Mugabe agreed, with their leader (Mujuru) claiming she respects the president and would never do anything to harm him.
“(Rugare) Gumbo told the president that he was not happy about the First Lady’s (Grace Mugabe) national rallies where she attacked Mujuru,” said Chizema.
Chizema said after the Mujuru faction finished their presentations, Mugabe literally blew his top accusing the Zanu-PF secretary for administration, Didymus Mutasa, of political promiscuity.
“When all guys from the Gamatox camp finished their contributions, the president then openly told Mutasa that he was promiscuous to the extent that he had lost his dignity. He accused Mutasa of backstabbing him by trying to assassinate him,” she said.
Mutasa, who is in the Mujuru camp, is said to have told a female friend that “the president will be shot if he continues to allow the savage attacks on Mujuru”.
Mugabe is reported to have then turned on Gumbo, reliving the events of the liberation war in which the suspended Zanu-PF spokesman is said to have plotted to topple Mugabe.
He then asked Gumbo what sin he had committed for him to mull plans to assassinate him.
“The president told Gumbo that during the liberation war, he (Gumbo) had attempted to end the lives of Hebert Ushewokunze (late national hero) and others and was again planning to do the same to him,” said Chizema.
“We all wept upon hearing that assassination attempt and that day we never bothered to eat dinner,” she said.
It was at that point that Mugabe is reported to have asked a member of the Zanu-PF youth league to move a motion for the suspension of Gumbo.
The liberation war stalwart was subsequently suspended for five years while Mutasa and Mujuru survived to fight another day.
However, the duo along with Labour Minister Nicholas Goche, who is also accused of being party to the sinister plot, have since lost their positions in the powerful Zanu-PF Central Committee from which Mugabe normally draws his cabinet and politburo members.
Goche is alleged to have been the main runner in the plot in which he is reported to have travelled to South Africa and Israel to hire the “hit-men”.
Gumbo is said to have been recorded claiming the “President will be removed the Kabila (Laurent) way if he continues to frustrate Mujuru’s bid” for the top job.
Kabila, who was the president of the DRC, was assassinated by one of his bodyguards in 2001.
Chizema also claimed the Mujuru camp had a plan to humiliate Mugabe at next week’s congress.
“The first plan was to mobilise their structures particularly their provincial chairmen to humiliate the president through a vote of no confidence and engage foreign media to cover Mugabe’s humiliation.
“If that stage failed, they were planning to assassinate him the Kablia way. They were sourcing foreign funds to carry out their evil missions, but unfortunately we have a strong state security establishment which intercepted everything,” she said.
Mujuru has publicly denied claims she plotted to assassinate Mugabe. This was after Mugabe’s wife, Grace, claimed the vice-president was behind a sinister plot to get rid of her husband. She also claimed Mujuru was corrupt, a charge she denied.
Mugabe’s wife last month demanded that Mujuru should either step down ahead of the congress or risk being fired.