President Emmerson Mnangagwa is reportedly set to appoint Zimbabwe Defence Forces commander General Philip Valerio Sibanda as his second vice president.
This claim was made on Thursday by self-exiled former Information minister Jonathan Moyo.
Mnangagwa’s second VP, Kembo Mohadi resigned in March last year following a sex scandal.
Moyo also claimed that Air Marshal Elson Moyo, the Air Force of Zimbabwe commander, would succeed Sibanda.
He tweeted on Thursday:
In what will be a double whammy to his political detractors in & outside ZanuPF ahead of the party’s 2022 Congress & the 2023 polls, @edmnangagwa is set to appoint CDF Philip V Sibanda as State VP, to replace Mohadi & will replace Sibanda with Air Marshal Elson Moyo, as CDF!
General Sibanda’s appointment as State Vice President is imminent. Preparations to setup his VP office, including staff recruitment, are already underway. Sibanda’s appointment as State VP will endanger Mohadi’s position as one of the two VPs and Second Secretaries of ZanuPF!
Moyo’s claims could not be independently verified, but it is believed he maintains contacts with senior ZANU PF officials and some elements in the military.
Mnangagwa’s spokesman George Charamba last week said the ZANU PF leader would not be stampeded into announcing Mohadi’s successor.
Speaker of the National Assembly, Jacob Mudenda recently called upon the president to appoint a second VP who has traditionally been appointed on the basis that they are former members of ZAPU as per the terms of a 1987 ‘unity accord’ between ZANU and ZAPU.
Sibanda fought in the 1970s war of independence on the side of ZIPRA, whose political arm, ZAPU, has held one of the two vice president positions since 1990.
If Moyo’s predictions are accurate, Mnangagwa would have a vice president and ZDF commander all hailing from Mberengwa – his home district.