A former Cabinet Minister, Saviour Kasukuwere, says President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government continues to target people it believes were once aligned to the late president Robert Mugabe, who was toppled in a defacto military coup in 2017.
In a statement addressed to people, who were supporting Mugabe’s leadership and were aligned to a faction of the ruling Zanu PF called Generation 40, Kasukuwere said, “We all carry deep and painful wounds of the treatment that has been meted out by fellow comrades to many of us. You loved the party and respected President Mugabe. You willingly sacrificed a lot as leaders of the party in various capacities. At the center of the conflict in the party today is the unjustified and callous victimization that has happened since the Nov 17 coup.
“This has been painful to all and those of us who were in leadership are aware of how this has brought pain and untold suffering to you. When one joins a political movement, they do so to advance its interests and those of the nation. The treatment that many comrades have gone through is beyond imagination.”
Kasukuwere said his colleagues have lost their beloved ones, sacked from their work, some thrown out of the party for having supported Mugabe and others are in exile yet still some live with exclusion and victimization to this day.
“Some are in the courts and paying huge amounts to defend themselves on spurious charges. Others have had their land taken away and many are living in fear. ZANU PF was not formed to harm its children ..... “kudya vana vayo” as they say. I, as one of the senior leaders who served under President Mugabe and led many amongst you, am acutely aware of the responsibility on my (our) shoulders. This issue of ill-treatment and injustice to cadres is current and affects one’s conscience everyday.
“I receive calls and pleas from cadres on a daily basis. It weighs heavily therefore that a solution should be found for our comrades to live their normal lives without victimization and ostracism. Comrades, it appears those who have turned from the MDC to the current system are actually enjoying to the detriment of those who stood with the party during difficult times. As you are aware, some have become ambassadors and commissioners, board directors and beneficiaries of the state.”
Kasukuwere noted that the committed party cadres are today running and hiding from fellow supporters. “We have turned against each other and have become the most wanted enemies!!! What a change!! We have to ask these difficult questions and hopefully find answers!! Is this the ZANU PF party we served so loyally? Is this the party of our fathers and mothers who sacrificed for our freedom!!?
“Comrades, I will not bore you with more details and lamentations. Difficult decisions have to be made and, in the process, we should now consult wide and far on how to resolve this deadly conundrum. We are all living victims of our own system and this can’t continue.”
He said someone should take the lead and search for a solution, adding that “freedom and peace will always come at a cost. I have said before, painful decisions have to be taken, and the process has begun. It must not be about an individual but the collective interest of all cadres.”
Zanu PF has not yet reacted to Kasukuwere’s remarks. The former cabinet minister recently held a meeting with independent Norton legislator, Temba Mliswa and former Chivi South Member of Parliament, Killer Zivhu before issuing the latest statement.
Zanu PF spokesperson, Chris Mutsvangwa, castigated the three in a three-page statement.
Mutsvangwa said, “The party and home of the Zimbabwe revolution has noticed the attempt at grandstanding by an exiled erstwhile G40 figure who goes by the name Saviour Kasukuwere. He is in self-styled, self-imposed exile in South Africa. He issued a statement in the wake of a self-serving encounter with two vain political pretenders. Through this encounter, Kasukuwere seeks to smuggle and snuggle back into political relevance onto the ongoing and unfolding drama of the glorious Zimbabwe revolution led by President Mnangagwa, the First Secretary of the ruling Zanu PF.
"Clearly, three years of exile after his spectacular fall from political grace courtesy of the 2017 Operation Restore Legacy have taken a toll on the mindset of the exiled G40 Kingpin. Completely out of touch with the political realities of the Zimbabwe political scene, he now seeks relevancy through some two moonlighters and pretenders.
Mutsvangwa claimed that one of them is in limbo as a “garrulous and cantankerous political independent. A lost soul rapidly losing burnish. He now desperately clutches onto the coattails of a sister who prefers to ride onto the fortunes of mainstream Zanu PF Party and its tried and tested leader, President ED Mnangagwa
"The other moonlighter is a publicity seeking political adventurer who somehow thinks his stunts may win him followers in Masvingo Province, the bedrock of a solid revolutionary Zanu PF support. For the record, President E D Mnangagwa has no need whatsoever of the purported and professed support of the three whistlers in the dark who wallow in the political darkness. He will win the by-elections and 2023 National Elections based on the ardent support of the Zimbabwe populace.”
Mliswa and Zivhu were unreachable for comment as they were not responding to calls on their mobile phones.