By Mlondolozi Ndlovu
Harare, May 20, 2016 – ZANU PF youths linked to Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s camp have revealed they were being stampeded by their seniors to join the so-called one million march organised for next Wednesday.
The youths said at a press briefing on Thursday they will take part in the march but were quick to warn their party rivals in the Generation 40 camp they will not allow them to hijack the rally to prop up their ambitions for party control ahead of President Robert Mugabe’s much anticipated exit from his job.
The party youth league is organising the march as a show of support to the 92 year old leader, who is under pressure from party hawks to surrender his job of decades.
However, Mnangagwa loyalists view the march as a publicity stunt by G40.
The increasingly influential G40 comprises younger and ambitious party politicians angling to succeed the nonagenarian leader whose impending exit from politics has triggered panic and intense behind the scenes horse trading by politicians pondering a less glamorous life outside the gravy train.
Mnangagwa, who by virtue of being Mugabe’s deputy, is the natural successor, has come under strong resistance from the group which is rooting for the First Lady, Grace to succeed her husband.
Speaking at a press conference in Harare, Mnangagwa loyalists who were initially not too keen to join the march, revealed they had been ordered to join the rally by under-fire Zanu PF secretary for youth affairs Pupurai Togarepi.
“Having sat and deliberated on issues with the National Secretary for Youth Affairs Cde P Togarepi, seeking clarity on many issues in which he successfully shed the light, we therefore after receiving the proper light and guidance, encourage all our membership to participate in the one million man march,” read the statement.
“Cde P. Togarepi has relentlessly reassured us that this march is clear towards supporting only the President Cde R.G Mugabe,” The organisations called upon their members to participate in the upcoming march and show support to Mugabe longevity to power.
“All members of ZICOSU, Ziliwaco Trust, Children of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (CZNLWVA) and the National Youth Service are cordially invited and sincerely encouraged to participate in this august event, first of its kind in total support of the President Cde R.G Mugabe,” they said in a joint statement read by Obey Mashanda the ZICOSU Treasurer.
They were however quick to warn their G40 opponents not to use the march to prop up their succession ambitions saying all the glory must be directed towards Mugabe.
“We shall not sit back and in any way entertain a few opportunists who would want to drag the revolutionary ship by the tail to the detriment of the general populace both in our beloved party Zanu PF and the country in general,” said the youths in reference to G40.
They also accused their party rivals of being aligned to the spiky American intelligence, the CIA.
“However, to those who are ingratiating with the CIA and many counter-revolutionaries around the globe, its no longer a time for them to shape up but ship out,” they said referring to cabinet ministers and G40 protagonists, Jonathan Moyo and Saviour Kasukuwere.
“As students, we will soon fire Jonathan Moyo like we did with Olivier Muchena,” said Tonderai Chidawa, who represented ZICOSU.
“To those that had been peddling ill founded rumours looking for credit through the one million march, we say we understand you are only ciphers who want to become digits. Therefore we support the President and not you.
“We shall not sit back and in any way entertain a few opportunists who would want to drag the revolutionary ship by the tail to the detriment of the general populace both in our beloved party Zanu PF and the country in general.
“Our beloved President of the Republic and First Secretary of our beloved party, Zanu PF we say we love you Baba and our shockingly resounding attendance on Africa day the march is a credit deserving you only and not anyone else.”