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Zimbabwe's Ruling Zanu PF Party Suspends More Senior Officials

President Robert Mugabe with his two deputies, Phelekezela Mphoko (L) and Emmerson Mnangagwa (R). Collage by Ntungamili Nkomo

Zanu PF has again suspended 39 members believed to be linked to a faction of the party said to be led by ousted former Vice President Joice Mujuru, who was accused by the ruling party of allegedly planning to topple President Robert Mugabe last December.

According to the Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation, the suspended members include former Information Minister Webster Shamu and his colleague Sylvester Nguni of Mashonaland West, former Environment Minister Andrew Langa and several others.

Two weeks ago the party expelled at least seven top party members who have been linked Mrs. Mujuru and several others accused of attempting to topple President Robert Mugabe before the party’s congress last December.

They include Mashonaland East party stalwarts, Ray Kaukonde and Olivia Muchena, Masvingo political gurus, former Energy Minister Dzikamai Mavhaire, Kudakwashe Gopo and war veteran Claudius Makova, and David Butau of Mashonaland Central province.

Those that were suspended for between three and five years by the ruling party, which has been in power for more than 35 years, are former senior state and party officials and cabinet ministers - Munacho Mutezo, Nicholas Goche, Flora Buka, Jaison Machaya, Noah Mangondo, Tendai Savanhu, Amos Midzi, Iris Mabuwa and several others.

They are believed to be linked to the dumped Mujuru faction, which is understood to be in the process of forming a party named Zanu PF People First.