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Senior Government and Zanu-PF officials who were booted out of office in recent months for their parts in a plot to unseat President Mugabe have turned against each other, trading accusations on who is to blame for their demise.

Last week ex-Vice President Mujuru, seven ministers and a deputy minister were relieved of their duties in connection with the issue.

Now, according to sources, some of these individuals are back-biting each other in a desperate effort to save their skins and prove that they succumbed to "peer pressure".

It is reported that former Energy and Power Development Minister Dzikamai Mavhaire and his Deputy Engineer Munacho Mutezo are no longer in good books.

This followed reports that Cde Mavhaire leaked information which implicated his former deputy in the alleged siphoning of Zesa funds to bankroll factionalism.

It is said he leaked the information in a bid to show that he was a "better devil" than Mutezo.

"If you can check, most of the money Zesa contributed to the faction was contributed as a ministry decision but Mavhaire is distancing himself and leaving Mutezo to stew.

"When Mavhaire distanced himself from those activities and laid all the blame on his deputy he thought he was going to survive the chop," a source said.

Cde Mavhaire could not be reached for comment, while Cde Mutezo refused to comment.

The two ministers were among key allies of Cde Mujuru who were sacked last week for their factional and illegal power-seeking activities.

Others who got the boot were Presidential Affairs Minister Didymus Mutasa, Labour Minister Nicholas Goche and Indigenisation Minister Francis Nhema among others.

Another source said when some of these officials saw the end was nigh, they started back-biting each other in desperate attempts to keep their jobs.

One of them, we are told, apologised early and renounced factional activities, resulting in him retaining his Central Committee position via constitutional Presidential appointment.

This tallies with First Lady and new Zanu-PF Women's League boss Amai Grace Mugabe's call for factionalists to simply stop what they were doing and realign themselves to the ruling party's principle of unity for development.

"Several ministers started blaming each other for their woes when it became apparent that they were facing the exit door. Remember most of them were desperate to keep their jobs because their businesses are in shambles," said a source.

The sources said many of them were consulting on how they could come back into the fold.

One of those, sources said, was ex-ICT Minister Webster Shamu.

He spent the better part of last week saying he was in meetings and could not comment, while minister Nhema was not reachable.

Meanwhile, Zanu-PF's new spokesperson and Minister of Economic Planning, Ambassador Simon Khaya Moyo, says he will not speak yet on his recent reassignments as well as the no-confidence vote attempt on him by party members in Matabeleland South province.

Some party members from the province attempted to oust him, accusing the former diplomat of promoting the faction led by Cde Mujuru. Ambassador Khaya Moyo was — at the recent Zanu-PF's 6th People's National Congress — reassigned to Secretary for Information and Publicity from National Chair. The party chairmanship will now rotate between VPs Mnangagwa and Mphoko.

President Mugabe also reassigned Ambassador Khaya Moyo from Senior Minister in the Office of the President to Economic Planning and Development Minister.

When our Bulawayo Bureau approached him on the sidelines of a church service for the late Cde Tafi Moyo at Bulawayo Amphitheatre yesterday and asked for a comment on his latest portfolios as well as the attempted no-confidence vote, Ambassador Khaya Moyo said he was not yet prepared to discuss these issues.

"Not now, not now please. I'm here for the funeral and I'm not discussing anything outside the funeral. All those other issues we will deal with them later, for now let's talk about what I'm here for. I'll grant a proper interview and discuss issues in details. Some of the issues you might want to talk about might be of a serious nature and may not need to just scratch on the surface. I'll give all of you interviews, starting with you, you'll be the first," he said before he left for Cde Tafi Moyo's burial at Lady Stanley cemetery in Bulawayo.

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