HARARE – Former Vice President and now Zimbabwe People First (ZPF) leader, Joice Mujuru, has told weary and long-suffering citizens to “keep walking” as the potentially epoch-making 2018 national elections are around the corner.
Speaking in an interview with the Daily News yesterday, the widow of the late liberation struggle icon, General Solomon Mujuru, also said contrary to the propaganda coming from “the usual quarters”, her party was hard at work strategising how to boot President Robert Mugabe and Zanu PF out of power.
Her comments came amid escalating conspiracies and propaganda to the effect that Mujuru was allegedly developing cold feet about taking on Mugabe, after failing to hold a single rally since the formation of ZPF — having been fired from the warring Zanu PF in December 2014 on unproven allegations of plotting to topple and assassinate the nonagenarian.
But an unfazed Mujuru told Zimbabweans “not to worry”, adding that she and ZPF were busy “strategising” for a better future for all.
“Kuvanhu ndiko kwedu, ndiko kwatakabva. Tine vanhu, saka hatimbofa takarasisa vanhu (We came from the people and we and the people are one. We have a lot of supporters, and we will never betray the people).
“Zimbabweans should not worry because we are now close, and we will be coming to meet them, addressing rallies soon.
“Those who say I am quiet do not know what they are talking about because I have been working on the ground, addressing party structures and now we are finishing up what we have been doing and should be ready to come and address the people,” Mujuru said.
In the meantime, there have been growing calls for Mujuru and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai to join hands and take on Zanu PF together.
With both political figures previously indicating that they would consider working together, this has caused much trepidation and anxiety within Zanu PF — which is battling debilitating factional and succession wars — amid fears that the duo could spell doom for Mugabe and his ruling party.
Speaking late last month, Tsvangirai said the MDC realised the importance of a viable coalition to challenge Zanu PF in the 2018 general elections.
“The MDC will not stand in the way of any coalition discussions. We are talking to people, and we are looking for possibilities for change and if coalitions are one of the possibilities for change, we will go for that, and go for it genuinely and not playing a big brother mentality,” he said then.
But speaking on his 92nd birthday, Mugabe — who has been nominated by Zanu PF as its 2018 presidential candidate — scoffed at the idea of a grand coalition, saying it would not threaten his long rule.
“If you put zero plus zero plus zero plus zero, grand zeros, what do they amount to? You are afraid of them?” Mugabe asked rhetorically.
ZPF spokesperson Rugare Gumbo, also told the Daily News yesterday that his party was still studying the situation before deciding whether to take part in the Mazowe North by-elections scheduled for July 23, following the recent death of Zanu PF legislator Edgar Chidavaenzi.
This was after observers said the seat potentially offered the newly-formed party a platform to prove its mettle against Zanu PF.
“We are still looking at the feasibility of participating in by-elections. There are a lot of challenges associated with that so we are presently studying the situation,” Gumbo said.