PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has left former Defence minister Sydney Sekeramayi in the “cold” after snubbing him when he named a list of Zanu PF stalwarts assigned to fulltime positions at the party’s headquarters.
Addressing the Zanu PF central committee on Thursday, Mnangagwa redeployed a cast of bigwigs, most of them former Cabinet ministers, to the party after they failed to secure government positions.
These included former Home Affairs minister Obert Mpofu (secretary of administration), former ministers David Parirenyatwa, Simon Khaya Moyo, Chris Mushohwe and former Senate President Edna Madzongwe.
Khaya-Moyo, the former Energy minister, will remain party spokesperson, while Mushohwe (former minister of Presidential Scholarships) was named party secretary for economic affairs.
Zimbabwe National War Veterans Association spokesperson Douglas Mahiya was named new secretary for war veterans, a position formerly held by Sekeramayi.
Madzongwe was named deputy secretary of transport, former Industry minister Mike Bimha (secretary for economic empowerment), former Masvingo Provincial Affairs minister Josaya Hungwe (secretary for labour) and Lewis Matutu (deputy secretary for youth affairs), while Cleveria Chizema becomes secretary for health. She will be deputised by Parirenyatwa.
Sekeramayi, whom former President Robert Mugabe reportedly wanted to succeed him as party leader and President, has failed to secure a government position following the ex-President’s ousting in a military-backed operation last November.
The former Defence minister was linked to the party’s vanquished G40 faction after one of the faction’s kingpins self-exiled former Higher Education minister Jonathan Moyo, launched a campaign to sell him as Mugabe’s successor, claiming he was more senior to Mnangagwa in Zanu PF.
In an interview on the eve of the July 30 elections, Mugabe let the cat out of the bag, disclosing he had settled for Sekeramayi as his replacement before Mnangagwa used the army to usurp power.
The grey-haired Sekeramayi, who held several portfolios in government since independence in 1980, will now only be a central committee member.