James Thompson | 21 August 2018 | Business Day
As post-election squabbles continue, President Emmerson Mnangagwa says Mugabe elements within the party will be fired
Harare — War veterans in Zimbabwe have resolved to march to the Robert Mugabe International Airport to demand the removal of its “dirty” name.
Formerly Harare International Airport‚ the facility was renamed in November 2017‚ a few days before Mugabe was forced to resign through a military-orchestrated operation.
Speaking at a media conference in Harare on Tuesday‚ War Veterans’ leader and newly elected member of parliament for Gokwe Central‚ Victor Matematanda‚ said Mugabe had joined a long list of sell-outs of the liberation struggle. “Tomorrow we are going to demand the removal of Mugabe’s dirty name and we ask our leaders to put the names of our heroes [instead]‚” he said.
On the eve of the harmonised elections‚ Mugabe declared that he would not vote for his “oppressors” in reference to the Zanu-PF. Thereafter‚ president-elect Emmerson Mnangagwa’s poor showing in various constituencies in the three Mashonaland provinces was linked to Mugabe’s last-minute support for opposition MDC Alliance presidential candidate, Nelson Chamisa.
Mnangagwa told the Zanu-PF supporters last week that there were Mugabe elements within the party that had sabotaged him and he would fire them from the party.
“There were others who were saying ‘vote for the MP‚ but as for the president, just do what you think is good for you’. We now know these people. What it shows is that such comrades do not rally with the leadership of the party. So such people should be retired and if they want to come back they should come back as full members of the party‚” he said.
In an interview last week, Mnangagwa also hinted that he would strip Mugabe of at least 12 farms leaving the former leader with just one. In the past, Mnangagwa has made good on his promises‚ such as withdrawing the security detail from Mugabe on the eve of the July 30 polls in a suspected act of vengeance after the former leader threw his weight behind Chamisa.
However, despite denigrating its former leader’s legacy‚ the Zanu-PF has gone back to its policies. Last week, the West led calls for the party to respect the rule of law at a time when the government’s charm offensive for international re-integration had started showing positive results.