HARARE – Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s allies in Mashonaland West Province are pushing for the ouster of Zanu PF women’s league finance secretary, Sarah Mahoka, from the party, it has emerged.
Regional sources told the Daily News yesterday that Team Lacoste — as Mnangagwa’s backers in the Zanu PF succession matrix are popularly referred to — were planning a blitzkrieg on the forthright Mahoka, who has been on the forefront attacking the Midlands godfather.
The sources alleged that the plot, which saw a group of youths gather outside the Zanu PF provincial offices in Chinhoyi chanting anti-Mahoka slogans during a provincial coordinating committee meeting (PCC) at the weekend, involved party bigwigs, secretary for administration Ignatius Chombo and central committee member Joseph Chirongoma.
“They (Team Lacoste) wanted to influence the PCC into passing a vote of no confidence against Mahoka as they hired youths to sing outside while we were having our meeting but they lacked the numbers and in the end, they did not achieve anything.
“Without numbers, they are chasing a wild goose because they have nothing in the province,” a provincial executive member linked to the Generation 40 (G40) said yesterday.
The G40 is a faction led by Young Turks in the governing party that is opposed to Mnangagwa succeeding President Robert Mugabe.
Contacted for comment, Mahoka laughed off the attempt to oust her, saying she was unfazed by their attempts.
“I was busy enjoying myself with other women during the meeting so I did not take notice of that. But are they not wasting their precious time by trying the impossible?
“Remember, last week war veterans were also dreaming saying they had passed a vote of no confidence in me but I have since asked if it’s possible for (founder of the African Apostolic church Paul) Mwazha to fire the Pope (who leads the Catholic Church). That is not possible, isn’t it? I am not a war veteran, so I cannot be fired by them,” Mahoka said.
Mahoka has been vocal about Mnangagwa’s supposed ambitions to take over from Mugabe, to the point of even publicly challenging him to state his succession ambitions.
In February, Mahoka got a blacklash from the Mnangagwa camp after she compared the vice president to a duck, which would keep quite while her ducklings are under attack.
This was seen as a blow below the belt for the Midlands godfather who reportedly demanded that Mahoka apologises.
After the fracas, there were also claims that a hit-man had been sent out to kill the outspoken Hurungwe East Member of Parliament.
This comes amid reports of ongoing harassment of women in the provinces pushing for the elevation of a woman into the presidium.
The women’s league, supported by the G40, have been calling for the return of the women’s quota system in the party, which will see Mugabe appointing a woman as one of his two deputies — a move that is said to be targeted at demoting Mnangagwa.
Mahoka is also famous for coining the slogan “pasi nevanoti Eve haatongi (down with those who say, women cannot rule)”— which was interpreted by the VP’s allies as an attempt to prop up Grace’s alleged presidential ambitions.