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Mugabe Tells Rival Zanu PF Factions to Shut Up

FILE: In this image taken on Wednesday Feb, 10, 2016, Zimbabwean Deputy President Emmerson Mnangagwa greets party supporters at the ZANU-PF headquarters in Harare. (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi)

President Robert Mugabe has told rival factions in his ruling Zanu PF party fighting for his succession to “shut up”, saying the party’s internal strife is crippling the organization.

In a State of the Union Address following the teargassing of war veterans on Thursday in Harare aligned to the so-called Team Lacoste allegedly led by Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Mr. Mugabe said the rival groups should unite and stop fighting over the presidential post.

The other faction calling itself Generation 40 is allegedly led by his wife, Grace, who is said to be habouring presidential ambitions.

President Mugabe apologized to the war veterans for facing harsh police action, noting that they were allegedly fooled by one of the factions to hold an illegal meeting which was blocked by the police.

He said the ruling party would take stern measures against War Veterans Minister Christopher Mutsvangwa for organizing the so-called meeting to discuss the state of the ruling party, among several other issues.

He said the party will take the necessary “action will be taken where action needs to be taken”.

“We take exception to that. This irresponsible manner brings the name of the party and head of government into disrepute. People are beginning to wonder whether in fact we are governing properly in accordance with the rules.”