- Published: 14 July 2014
- Written by Herald
A new political outfit called the Zimbabwe Empowerment Movement (ZEM) has been formed.
Mr Garikai Musanonoka Sithole, who claims to be son to the late Zanu Ndonga leader, Reverend Ndabaningi Sithole, with another woman, not Vesta, leads the party. Mr Sithole (39) of Masvingo's Rujeko suburb, is a retired solider.
He said preparations for ZEM's inaugural congress were at an advanced. The congress will be held in Bulawayo next month. Mr Sithole said ZEM sought to fight corruption. He said existing political parties, including the ruling zanu-pf, had failed to tackle corruption. He said the party was going to contest in the 2018 elections.
ZEM has since started distributing fliers in Masvingo with Mr Sithole's face as the party's president and presidential candidate for the 2018 elections. Mr Sithole said his party's colours were red, yellow and black.
"Plans for our congress are now at an advanced stage and certainly it will be held in Bulawayo as a symbolic gesture because the city is the cradle of nationalism in Zimbabwe. All major political parties had their roots in Bulawayo. My plan is for the congress to be held next month if all goes according to plan. Thereafter we will launch our party all over the country," he said.
The ZEM leader said a national executive of his party was already in place, but refused to name the people.
"I cannot reveal the names of people in my executive, but we have very big names. You might also be interested to know that we have a very solid source of funding, but I will not disclose it. Our funding is coming from local sources, Zimbabwe has a lot of dollars."
Mr Sithole said Zimbabwe was not doing enough to fight corruption by punishing the offenders. He praised President Mugabe as a visionary leader with good policies, singling out the expropriation of land to resettle landless blacks and also the drive to indigenise the economy.
"My party will fight corruption. Yes, there are attempts to end the vice at the moment, but people accused of corruption continue to walk freely on the streets. It is very good to expose corruption but what matters is whether the culprits are arrested or not," said Mr Sithole.
He said corruption, and not sanctions, were to blame for economic problems affecting Zimbabwe. This was despite revelations that the ruinous sanctions have cost Zimbabwe about US$42 billion since their imposition by the West over a decade ago.