Seven things you might not know about Retired brigadier general Ambrose Mutinhiri now the leader of a new political party that has been endorsed by the former President of Zimbabwe, Robert Mugabe.
Mutinhiri recently resigned from Parliament blasting the new President, Emmerson Mnangagwa as having seized power through a coup and therefore was illegitimately leading the country. Mutinhiri announced that was now leader of New Patriotic Front and will be the Presidential candidate for 2018 elections.
1. Ambrose is the father to Vimbai who was part of the Big Brother season (Amplified). She is also an actress and a television personality. After Big Brother, she was chosen as the new presenter for the entertainment and lifestyle show, “Star Gist” on Africa Magic Entertainment.
2. Ambrose was married to Tracy who is also a top politician. They divorced acrimoniously grabbing headlines in local media while at it. Tracy who was once a deputy Minister of Labour and Social Services in Mugabe’s government was fired from Zanu PF in 2011. She was later to join the opposition MDC-T
3. According to Pindula -Mutinhiri started his political career during the days of the Second Chimurenga in the then Rhodesia. This he did through joining the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU) and was subsequently attested into the military wing of the revolutionary movement (ZIPRA).
In fact, Mutinhiri was one of the founder members of the ZAPU party and its military wing ZIPRA. He rose through the ranks to become one of the most successful military leaders during the liberation struggle.
4. As early as 2014 Ambrose had started to show his ambitions for the second highest post of the land. Mutinhiri, arguing why he was suitable to replace the late VP John Nkomo, said qualified for the position. Mutinhiri’s claimed he was the most senior person from former ZAPU members. His assertion became a point of discomfort in the party with some alleging that he was rewriting history and was not the most senior at the time.
5. He was once Minister of Youth Development and Employment Creation at the time when Zanu PF was pushing its training of youth militia at the Border Gezi Training centre.
6. Just last year, Ambrose was the Minister of State for Mashonaland East
7. Ambrose's home province, Mashonaland East is also home to the once feared former First Lady Grace Mugabe who hails from Chikomba. Mugabe's nephew Patrick Zhuwao claims that he is working with some youth league executive members in Mash East in a bid to cause confusion within Zanu PF.
Meanwhile former president Mugabe is being accused of trying to scuttle Mnangagwa’s electoral prospects later this year, by working with all forces opposed to the new president’s administration.
Mugabe fell out with Mnangagwa when he fired the 75-year-old leader both from being his deputy in government and from Zanu PF in November last year, as his long-drawn succession war boiled over.
The tables turned on Mugabe when he resigned the same month following a military intervention which paved the way for Mnangagwa to take over the reins at both government and Zanu PF level.
Mugabe and Mnangagwa had until then shared a very close relationship that dated back to the days of the liberation struggle when the latter was the former’s aide.