A group of former ZANU PF members calling itself ZANU PF Original has implored self-exiled former party political commissar, Saviour Kasukuwere to return to Zimbabwe and lead the party’s campaign for the 2023 elections.
Addressing reporters in Harare on Saturday, ZANU PF Original member Jim Kunaka claimed President Emmerson Mnangagwa was leading a ZANU PF faction called Lacoste which was no longer serving the interests of the party. He said:
As much as Kasukuwere is from Mashonaland Central Province, we want to make it clear that he is not provincial leadership material, but a national leader.
That is why we have people coming from all the provinces to say to comrade Kasukuwere that Zimbabwe is waiting for you.
We are fully behind you. Come back and lead the people. You are not alone and you shall never walk alone.
We want to reclaim our revolution and party which was hijacked by the Lacoste power mongers.
Kunaka was fired from ZANU PF in 2014 while Kasukuwere went into self-imposed exile following the 2017 military coup.
Political commentator Vivid Gwede said the emergence of ZANU PF Original could be a manifestation of unresolved leadership questions within the ruling party. Said Gwede:
This is a sign of the unresolved leadership questions within ZANU PF since the coup. The formation of this group must not be disassociated from related developments such as the court challenge against the party’s leadership all pointing to internal disgruntlement and factionalism.
Outgoing ZANU PF national youth secretary Tendai Chirau dismissed ZANU PF Original as puppets of the vanquished G40 cabal. He tweeted:
Delusions of grandeur by expelled members sponsored by some members of the fallen G40 cabal.
There is only one Zanu PF led by @edmnangagwa and it will win the 2023 elections resoundingly.
The willing tools of the fallen cabal may continue hallucinating, but they will not win