A Zanu PF Youth League member says the ruling party’s proposed Extra Ordinary Congress is expected to give President Robert Mugabe a life term as the leader of the party and southern African nation.
Speaking at a meeting held in Manicaland, Zanu PF provincial chairperson Mbuso Chinguno, said it is befitting for the president to die in office like three of his late deputies, Simon Muzenda, Joseph Msika and John Nkomo.
“We want to make it clear (during the congress) that President Mugabe should be the life president. The late Muzenda died while he was vice president, Msika died in office and John Landa Nkomo died in office and therefore we think that Gushungo (Mugabe) will vacate that position when he dies,” he said, amid applause.
Chinguno said there are a lot of conflicts in Zanu PF as some party members want Mr. Mugabe’s post, even if they clearly know that he is still in office.
“… for President Mugabe to deliver what people expect, in terms of building hospitals and bridges, there are some people who are saying that their time has come for them to rule but we are saying Gushungo has to die in that post. This inconsistence over this issue must stop.
“Therefore we are saying let us hold a congress (special) where we will reaffirm that President Mugabe should be our life president.”
But some Zanu PF supporters in Masvingo province say their voices are being left out of the debate on the proposed Extra Ordinary Congress, noting that only members of the so-called Generation 40 appear to be in the driving seat and calling for the elevation of Mugabe as life president and ouster of Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Some of the supporters, who spoke to VOA Studio 7, said they are even surprised that some G40 members, want First Lady Grace Mugabe to be one of Mr. Mugabe’s vice presidents.
G40 is said to be led by Mrs. Mugabe, who allegedly habors presidential ambitions and has been urging President Mugabe to lay out a clear plan for his successor.
The other faction, known as Team Lacoste, is allegedly led by Mnangagwa, who claimed recently that he was poisoned when he attended a Youth Interface Rally in Gwanda, Matabeleland South province.
However, Mrs. Mugabe and Mnangagwa have distanced themselves from these two factions even if they have been singled out by Mugabe as causing havoc in the former liberation party.