President Emmerson Mnangagwa, is reportedly grooming former cabinet minister and ousted Zanu PF political commissar, Saviour Kasukuwere, to be his preferred ruling party successor and possible next in line president of the country, Spotlight Zimbabwe can exclusively reveal.
According to high level sources close to the Office of The President and Cabinet (OPC), together with corroboration from current serving ministers, Kasukuwere, who hitherto was widely thought to be former first lady, Grace Mugabe’s decimated G40 factional confederacy kingpin, is in fact said to be a manchurian candidate of the country’s powerful security and military complex.
Kasukuwere, who not long ago as political commissar went around the country with Mnangagwa, then a fresh vice president, introducing and promoting him at ruling party rallies in 2015, is also said to have known about the now historic November 2017 military intervention, which ended Mugabe’s rule in advance, and as a suspected operative and closet ally of Mnangagwa, was given “a perfect political script to play” so as to camouflage himself from the event’s political equation.
Mugabe and Grace found themselves behind the eight ball on the evening of 14 November 2017, when the Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) cordoned off the capital, and seized control of national television and other key areas of the primate city. A statement was issued the next day during an early morning emergency broadcast, stating that the operation was not a putsch, and that Mugabe was safe, as only “criminals” around the former leader were the ones being targeted.
This publication can also reveal that Mnangagwa, contrary to some reports, is keen to govern for two maximum terms, as provided under the new constitution, and that he will leave politics together with his deputies in 2028, to pave way for Kasukuwere’s ascendancy. Information at hand also suggests that, vice president, Rtd General Constantino Chiwenga, is not interested in the presidency, following political grapevine that the military strongman could possibly become president in 2023, after a one-term Mnangagwa administration.
Chiwenga’s counterpart, VP Kembo Mohadi, has gone on record to say that he is content with his post and will not seek to run for higher office.
“Things are not what they seem to be,” said an OPC informant. “This talk of retiring from politics and pursuing business interests by Kasukuwere is a cover-up for the real planning on the part of Zanu PF continuity in power. Tyson (Kasukuwere’s nickname) is likely going to be appointed into the ruling party politburo after the elections and stay out of government for strategic reasons. That way the president can shape him up and prepare him for eventual takeover. You must remember that Kasukuwere was recruited at a young age by the Central Intelligence Organisation, and that leaders in most countries even in the West are determined by their secret service. The rest of everything is a public show, but that’s how sophisticated things are from behind the scenes.”
Ministers who spoke to us in private this week, with intimate knowledge about the power matrix at play, also made the startling revelations that Kasukuwere has the backing of South African leader, Cyril Ramaphosa, who is a key ally of Mnangagwa after they met and crystallised their political partnership in Davos, Switzerland, during the World Economic Forum (WEF) in January.
Kasukuwere, the ministers say also has massive support from South Africa’s Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader, Julius Malema, and the ruling party of that country, the African National Congress (ANC) itself. Kasukuwere is the architect behind Malema’s visit to Zimbabwe in 2010 when he was still the ANC youth leader prior to his expulsion in 2012.
“Ask yourself why Kasukuwere skipped the country for South African exile last year?” said one of them. “He was safe and sound, and doing a lot of ground work for his political comeback, while brainstorming together with his backers and powerful mining firms also open to his future presidency. All this while until his return to Zimbabwe last month, Kasukuwere kept in touch with the president. They’re also in good books with the general (VP Chiwenga). As you can see, he is back home and has been quickly acquitted of border jumping. The media is not opening its eyes, to report on the story behind the story.”
Outspoken legislator for Norton, and current parliamentary portfolio chairman on mines and energy, Temba Mliswa, has previously disclosed that, it was no secret that Kasukuwere wants to lead Zimbabwe and that the South Africans are aware of his wish.
“Kasukuwere must explain why we met Zuma in Cape Town,” Mliswa once told the press following a falling-out with Kasukuwere who had hired him as his personal fitness trainer. “He (Kasukuwere) introduced me to Julius Malema and does not want the ANC to know of his relationship with him. We had travelled (to South Africa) and then on our way back to Zimbabwe we changed direction and headed for Cape Town where we met Zuma. Kasukuwere was a deputy minister at the time and that does not happen every day to have a junior minister meeting a foreign head of state without the authority of their leader. Kasukuwere has never hidden his wish to lead the country particularly to the South Africans; they know it.”
Even finance minister, Patrick Chinamasa, last year in Mutare also said Kasukuwere wanted to be president, that’s why Zanu PF had resolved to appoint war veterans into strategic positions in government and the party, as the veterans had faced serious purges under Mugabe, as a calculation by G40 politicians to get them out of the way, so as to bring a new order of youth leaders.
“When the G40 cabal came in, they shoved the war vetetans away. As we discussed further, we realised that part of the problems we were facing were there because we didn’t have a political commissar,” Chinamasa told a Manicaland extraordinary provincial central committee meeting. “The one who was there had ambitions to be the president of the country, something he would achieve by dividing the people in the party.”
Kasukuwere was not answering his mobile phone when we sought a comment from him last night.
The former local government minister now appears to be having bad blood with his one time allies in the G40 camp, former higher education minister Jonathan Moyo and Mugabe’s nephew Patrick Zhuwawo, who have accused him of working with Mnangagwa, Chiwenga and secret service boss, Isaac Moyo, to negotiate his return to Zimbabwe.
In a twitter attack recently, Moyo said Kasukuwere had been negotiating a safe passage back home with the presidium all along, while in South Africa. “The term new dispensation to define period after illegal ouster of President Mugabe was coined and first used in a tweet by Hon Kasukuwere on November 21, 2017 shortly after President Mugabe’s forced resignation. Last five months, he’s been negotiating with ED, Chiwenga and CIO’s Isaac Moyo to return,” said Moyo.