President Robert Mugabe officially opened the ruling Zanu PF party congress Thursday vowing that some who allegedly plotted to assassinate him and those implicated in corruption will be sacked from government and face prosecution.
Mr. Mugabe continued his verbal attacks on his deputy, Joice Mujuru, calling her a “thief” who stole diamonds and gold as she planned to overthrow him.
In apparent reference to the deputy president and several cabinet ministers alleged to be in her camp whom he has accused to plotting to kill him and assume the leadership of Zanu-PF, Mr. Mugabe said anyone who is corrupt would be sacked and face prosecution.
Mrs. Mujuru and ministers like Didymus Mutasa and Nicholas Goche did not attend the congress. The president claimed that Mrs. Mujuru and her alleged allies were not blocked from attending the event but had decided stay away.
He described them as criminals saying their behavior was not in line with the principles of Zanu -F.
Zanu-PF youths had, however, threatened to deal with Mrs. Mujuru if she dared attend the congress.
Mr. Mugabe, who was flanked by his wife, Grace, chairman Simon Khaya Moyo, speaker of the national assembly Jacob Mudenda and president of the Senate, Ednah Madzongwe, said he had for a long time known that his deputy was allegedly plotting to topple him.
He commended his wife for exposing the alleged plot to oust him from office.
Mr. Mugabe said he was saddened that Zanu PF leaders had not behaved in an exemplary manner, adding this had divided the party.
He said some of the leaders were allegedly working with what he said were Zimbabwe’s detractors to effect regime change in Zimbabwe.
Some of the top Zanu PF officials linked to Mrs. Mujuru who did not attend the congress are Labour Minister Nicholas Goche and the party secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa.
For perspective on unfolding events in the party, Studio 7’s Sandra Nyaira turned to political analysts Gladys Hlatswayo and Chamunorwa Madiridze.
Hlatshwayo said she’s not surprised by what is happening in Zanu PF.