FORMER Zanu PF secretary for the youth league Pupurai Togarepi, who was demoted from the politburo last Wednesday, says he has accepted his fate and will now serve the party in the central committee.
Togarepi was stripped of his powerful post as a member of the politburo along with the party deputy youth secretary Lewis Matutu and political commissar Godfrey Tsenengamu for violating the ruling party directive not to air their views publicly.
Matutu and Tsenengamu, “in their private capacities,” alleged that three businessmen Billy Rautenbach, Kuda Tagwirei and Tafadzwa Musarara were cartel leaders behind the shortages of, among other things, fuel and maize meal in the country. They did not provide any shred of evidence.
Though Togarepi was not present when Matutu and Tsenengamu made the damning allegations, he was demoted from his politburo position, and could soon lose his role as the ruling party parliamentary chief whip, for tweeting and later granting media interviews, in support of the two former Zanu PF youth league leaders’ contentious press conference.
In an interview with the Daily News on Friday, Togarepi said he would do his best to serve the ruling party in his new position.
“I am a cadre of the party and I respect the decision of the party. I am a steward of the party and I serve at the pleasure of the party and the president who appointed me to that position. The party is supreme and I am, therefore, guided accordingly,” said Togarepi.
It emerged after the politburo meeting that Togarepi and his youths were backed by a few politburo members, notably war veterans leader Chris Mutsvangwa, but the decision to have them punished prevailed.
While Togarepi was stripped of his role as Zanu PF secretary for the youth league, Tsenengamu and Matutu were suspended from the party for a year and were also ordered to undergo training at the Zanu PF Hebert Chitepo School of ideology for three months.
Unlike Togarepi who has graciously accepted his fate, the other two youths leaders have vowed to fight corruption to the hilt.
Tsenengamu said while he will remain a member of Zanu PF he will, however, not be silenced from speaking against corruption.
“I have no problem in remaining in Zanu PF because the Zanu PF I belong to doesn’t support corruption, I will remain in the party, but we will not politicise the fight against corruption. If the party decides to expel me, then I will join another platform where they can afford me the chance to fight and speak against corruption. I am a young man who has the energy to fight on and if they expel me from the party, I will find other platforms to fight corruption, they have taken a position against me, but they have not taken my conscience or voice as a person, no one can,” Tsenengamu told the Daily News.
Matutu also said he would remain a member of Zanu PF, but won’t stop fighting corruption.
“The fight against corruption and cartels continues. However, some people have decided to act mischievously. We are only targeting those that are crippling our economy and causing Zimbabweans to languish in poverty. Let’s not be misled by wishful thinking from misdirected politicians,” said Matutu.