- Published: 10 December 2014
- Written by Chronicle
FORMER VICE PRESIDENT Joice Mujuru yesterday said she was just "a poor widow" and a "true Christian" who had "no capacity" to engineer President Robert Mugabe's assassination.
The ex-Vice President, who was sacked yesterday after 10 years in the job, claimed that she would die in Zanu-PF. Mujuru was sacked along with eight cabinet ministers as President Mugabe cracked the whip on a "treacherous cabal" that plotted to unconstitutionally remove him from office.
Mujuru was shown the door along with Webster Shamu (ICT, Postal and Courier Services), Simbarashe Mudarikwa (Minister of State for Mashonaland East Province), Francis Nhema (Minister of Youth Development, Indigenisation and Empowerment), Olivia Muchena (Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development), Nicholas Goche (Minister of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare), Didymus Mutasa (Minister of Presidential Affairs), Dzikamai Mavhaire (Minister of Energy and Power Development) and Munacho Mutezo (Deputy Minister of Energy and Power Development).
Mujuru, Mutasa and Goche missed the party's Congress that ended over the weekend after President Mugabe lifted the lid on an extraordinary plot to kill him, allegedly spearheaded by Mujuru.
Last night, President Mugabe's former deputy told the Voice of America's Studio 7 that allegations of corruption levelled against her were the product of "dirty politics".
"I've no capacity of doing those things. There's no way, there's no way and nobody has ever even suggested to me that these things that you're trying to do VP are wrong," she said.
"Mind you, I've been in the capacity of a Vice President for the past 10 years and I've been acting most of the time His Excellency is away and I don't think there's any time any one of his security details might tell him that the Vice President when he was acting invited us to sit over a plot of that nature, no ways. Mind you, I'm a Christian, a true Christian; I don't believe in killing, I don't believe in hating, I don't believe in making somebody suffer. It's politicking, these are some of the things that were started towards congress."
Mujuru said she was not given a chance to defend herself, although she admitted meeting President Mugabe privately at least three times in recent months.
"We were, some of us, especially myself, was not given a chance to explain even to discuss some of these things, few times I've been talking about them, telling people that I've no capacity, I'm not in a position to organise anybody to do such harm to anyone," she protested.
"Mind you, I've been a patron of the African Christian Council Churches of Zimbabwe which has over 700 churches, these are African formed churches. I'm sure you're quite familiar with them, and for such a person to be a patron to such a humongous organisation, you forget about them and you go back and you start even practising witchcraft, you start even thinking about killing somebody, even to assassinate a sitting President of State, it's unheard of, it's uncalled for, for what purpose? I'm just me, a poor widow, I can't do that."
The sacked Vice President reiterated her claims made at a Zanu-PF Women's League meeting early this year that the party had been infiltrated, and she suggests this group of "infiltrators" had misled the President leading to her removal from office.
"I'm surprised, and I even spoke about infiltration that has come in our party. I spoke about this in February if not March, early this year, when I went to address women in Chinhoyi but nobody took time to ask me what Ihad discovered or what I had in mind or what I had seen," said Mujuru.
"These are the things that I wanted us to discuss then about the infiltration that has come in our party. But it does not end, my friend, with discharging or dismissing Vice President Mujuru and these other chairmen of provinces because those people who're doing it, they'll remain in that faction that has remained with the President. They're not there to do anything good, to see the future of this party moving forward. I'm not so sure, anyway we wait to see."
She declined to identify the alleged infiltrators, saying she was "not good at dropping names".
She added that she would have preferred to discuss any issue in-house, but no discussion took place – although she attended several politburo meetings in recent months. She confirmed three private meetings with President Mugabe.
"He was telling me that he was not aware of what was happening, but to my surprise after having spoken to him the second time, he then addressed the youths that were bussed to our headquarters and that's the first time I heard him hinting about him being the head of party who had an understanding of what was going on," she said.
"His comments that day really left me with a feeling that he had some idea of what was going on, and that's when I started thinking, I'm sure I'm dealing with a situation which is beyond my control."
Mujuru claimed that she had received her letter of dismissal on Monday night and suggested that it was based on a non-existent law.
"Very true, I received it last night at 9.31PM. That yes I was no longer the Vice President of Zimbabwe with immediate effect. Full stop. And he quoted section 106 (1) (b) of the constitution which I tried to check in the constitution and I didn't get it, maybe he wanted to say Section 2 (b)."
Mujuru said it was too early to say what she intended to do next, but later in the interview hinted that she would not question authority.
"I don't know any other party other than Zanu-PF and that's my party. I'll die in Zanu-PF. Zimbabwe is my country and mind you, whatever has been going on, I had not been able to give my side of the story to the people and only today, I managed to release my second statement to the papers trying to give a bit of the narration of the other side of the story. So, being an elite nation, people are reading and beginning to see which is which so with time people will begin to see what really went wrong," she said.
She appears to hint that she would lie low, adding: "I'm not a fighting character. My background, I'm a trained person, when you receive an order from your senior; you carry it out right through.
"If you have anything to question about that order, you find a way of questioning it. I signed for that letter. This morning I even wrote a letter of acknowledgement and even thanking him for his immense contribution in my life and that's how we were taught in Zanla. That's how we were brought up in Zanu-PF."
Mujuru said she was prepared to defend herself against allegations in Section 106 (2) (b) that the President cited in dismissing her which states that she loses her job if she acts in a way that is inconsistent with her office, or exposes herself to any situation involving the risk of a conflict between her official responsibilities and private interests.
"Those are the things if I'm given a chance to meet our committee in the party, those are the things that they should ask me to explain or those are the things that we can talk about if they have them, that I've not been doing," she said.
She also told the radio station that she had a good relationship with security chiefs, whom she said shared the "same cause".
"Mind you, these are comrades in arms. Some of them, I shared with them the same trenches though they were in their different camps. The likes of (Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander, General) Constantine Chiwenga, (Air Force Commander, Air Marshal) Perrence Shiri, (Prisons and Correctional Services Commissioner Rtd Major General) Paradzai Zimondi. Unfortunately, my other colleague (Commander, Zimbabwe National Army, Lieutenant General) Philip Valerio Sibanda was with Zipra, but we're the same comrades. We belong to the same cause and I've no problem with them, we belong to the same background, it's only the assignments that we now have which are different."