War Vets ED on warpath, blast judicial capture,mafikizolo appointments

By Agencies

WAR veterans are demanding that President Emmerson Mnangagwa reshuffles his Cabinet and politburo to remove mafikizolos and accommodate ex-combatants.

Zanu PF central committee member and former legislator Blessed Geza said ex-combatants who risked their lives in the push to remove the late former President Robert Mugabe during the 2017 coup have been sidelined.

“The people who were working against Mnangagwa and [Vice-President Constantino] Chiwenga, those who wanted the two expelled from the party and killed are the ones who are now enjoying the fruits, while we are being sidelined,”Geza told HStv in an interview.

“It’s not right. We demand that President Mnangagwa reshuffles his politburo and Cabinet so that he accommodates war veterans.”

Mnangagwa appointed a blend of Cabinet ministers, who included technocrats and some old guard from Zanu PF, leaving out some war veterans who were in the forefront during the coup.

In February this year, Mnangagwa fired War Veterans minister Christopher Mutsvangwa who was one of the public faces of the coup.

No reasons for his dismissal were given.

Geza also complained about alleged judicial capture and abuse of law by top Zanu PF chefs.

“They are interfering with the judiciary,” he said.

“The independence of our courts have been compromised. It does not matter that I am a Zanu PF central committee member; I will speak as I see it.

“I urge the judges to come and report to war veterans so that we can deal with this intimidation.”

Mutsvangwa also recently complained about judicial capture in the arrest of his son, Neville, over money laundering and dealing in foreign currency.

Early this week, a High Court judge presiding over his son’s case recused herself without giving reasons.

The opposition and other civic groups have also bemoaned judicial capture.

Former Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) leader Nelson Chamisa refused to challenge Mnangagwa’s disputed victory in last year’s elections citing judicial capture.

Geza lifted the lid of behind the scenes moves to remove Mugabe, saying most Zanu PF leaders were cowards and terrified at the time.

“The party leadership is full of cowards, even the general population of Zimbabwe has cowards, they stand aside and watch their rights being trampled upon and choose to do nothing, nothing — no they should act,” Geza said.

In the hour-long interview on HStv, Geza also said Zanu PF was a party run on rumours.

“Our leaders love rumours and those who surround them know this fact, so they go to the President and propagate false information, they lie about us so that they curry favour and it has worked for them, but we are ready to stop it, we are going to stop it,” Geza said.

His remarks come as a splinter group of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) is alleging that there are moves to hijack the body by Zanu PF elements ahead of their upcoming congress.

In a statement, ZNLWVA chairperson Ethan Andrease Mathibela said Zanu PF factions wanted to hijack the organisation.

“What is particularly troubling is that many of these individuals cannot even recall the year in which they were ushered into leadership, indicating a complete disconnect with the history and mandates of the ZNLWVA,” Mathibela said.

“It is deeply concerning that aspiring chairpersons have continued to espouse political affiliations, which should be a matter of individual choice, not the association’s mandate.”

Mathibela also complained that war veterans were being sidelined by the current government.

“It is high time Zimbabwe’s liberation war veterans undertook comprehensive introspection and interrogate the factors that led to the formation of the ZNLWVA in the first place,” he said.

“This includes the failure by the government, led by liberation stalwarts, to accommodate the majority of those who fought in the trenches for Zimbabwe’s independence.

“Moreover, it is crucial that we examine why the majority of war veterans are living and dying in squalor, despite having defended the sovereignty and independence of Zimbabwe for the past 44 years.”

War veterans have been the mainstay of Zanu PF’s grip on power and remain major power brokers leading Mnangagwa to draft them into party structures.

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