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Former Cabinet Minister Kasukuwere Returns Home After 6 Month Self-imposed Exile

Former Cabinet Minister Saviour Kasukuwere (S. Mhofu/VOA)
Former Cabinet Minister Saviour Kasukuwere (S. Mhofu/VOA)

Former Local Government Minister Saviour Kasukuwere, who was forced to run for his dear life last November after the Zimbabwe Defence Forces temporarily seized control of all key state institutions before deposing then president Robert Mugabe, has returned home after a six-month self-imposed exile in South Africa.

According to the privately-owned Newsday newspaper, Kasukuwere returned home aboard a South African Airways aircraft midday in Harare and was immediately whisked away in a vehicle believed to be owned by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID).

He was questioned by the CID on issues not made public and then set free.

Some Zanu PF youth, led by Harare provincial chairperson Godwin Gomwe, staged a demonstration at the airport accusing the former Zanu PF political commissar of corruption.

The youth were caught in a video circulating on social media as saying that Kasukuwere allegedly pilfered funds under Zimbabwe’s indigenization program.

The former minister was not available for comment.

The state-controlled Herald newspaper quoted Kasukuwere as saying he will stay out of politics and denied reports that he is set to lead the Zimbabwe Patriotic Front linked to former president Robert Mugabe and the so-called Generation 40 (G40) faction of the ruling party, which wanted Mrs. Grace Mugabe to succeed her husband.

The Zimbabwe Defence Forces claimed that they wanted to get rid of “criminals” surrounding Mugabe when they launched what they termed Operation Restore Legacy in November last year that led to the end of Mugabe’s 37 years in power.

Kasukuwere fled to South Africa together with former Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo, former Youth Affairs Minister Patrick Zhuwao and several others who were linked to G40.

They were outmaneuvered by then Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s Team Lacoste faction of the ruling party, which wanted him to replace Mugabe.

Moyo, Zhuwao and other G40 members are still in self-imposed exile.