OPPOSITION Zapu leader, Dumiso Dabengwa has dismissed speculative reports that he was on the verge of rejoining the ruling Zanu-PF party to deputise President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
Zapu deputy spokesperson, Iphithule Maphosa yesterday told Southern Eye that contrary to the reports, Dabengwa had not been approached and did not intend to rejoin Zanu-PF, which he dumped in 2008 to resuscitate Zapu after being frustrated by then President Robert Mugabe’s unfulfilled promises.
“How can he be considering or considered being VP in a party he is not a member? He is a member of Zapu, he belongs to Zapu structures, where he is president already. According to internal processes of the party, he has no intentions of leaving Zapu for anything except retirement,” Maphosa said.
“Probably the rumour mill is basing their story out of this world imagination on the Unity Accord of 1987-2008. We need to remember that no champagne was popped when the 1987 Unity Accord was signed. Let us all remember that the post-1987 Zanu-PF was a result of a genocide on Zapu members and supporters as Mugabe’s unbridled hunger for unopposed power drove him into killing over 20 000 defenceless civilians in Matabeleland and Midlands provinces during ‘a moment of madness’ in his push for a one-party State.”
Maphosa said Mugabe sought to decimate and annihilate the opposition and he succeeded on December 22, 1987 when then Zapu president Joshua Nkomo signed the Unity Accord, not by ink, but with the blood of Zapu supporters and members, who today lie in unmarked shallow graves around the country.
“Zapu was arm-twisted into unity with Zanu-PF. So, for anybody to imagine that Dabengwa could be contemplating joining Zanu-PF on account of the Unity Accord, is not only wrong, but is deliberately blinding themselves to the fact that we pulled out of it in 2008/9 and we assured ourselves that never again shall we be victims of forced unity, whose burden lies only with us,” he said.
“What informed the pull-out from the Unity Accord still stands unresolved and, as such, we do not see any reason of going back on the decision to pull out . . . Dabengwa has never been approached to join Zanu-PF. He has never been approached to be a VP in Zanu-PF.” Maphosa said opposition parties were preparing to take over the reins of power after winning next year’s elections.
“We have in place a new government that is expected to lead a new dispensation, imagined or real. The opposition and civil society organisations (CSOs) are slowly becoming sober and taking up roles to contribute to the way forward,” he said.
“Constitutional reforms are high on the agenda, as the country snails towards elections by July next year. A concerted effort to lobby for comprehensive electoral reforms now seizes the opposition players just as the new government is still learning how to walk in their newly-found shoes.
“Corruption, having wreaked havoc in the once jewel of Africa, must be addressed in the most transparent manner, with the net being cast as wide as it must to rid the nation of that cancer. The general public awaits with bated breath to see how this contentious issue will be solved.”