Zanu PF slashes its Special Congress budget




HARARE – The embattled ruling party Zanu-PF has revised downwards the budget for its Extraordinary Congress to be held next month from the proposed $8 million, as the number of delegates to the special event will also be reduced, it has been learnt.

The duration of the Congress has also been slashed by half from the initial six days to three.

This according to State media was confirmed by the party’s Secretary for Information and Publicity, Simon Khaya Moyo, yesterday.

“The coordinating committee met yesterday (Saturday) and looked at various issues we have covered so far,” said Khaya Moyo. “It was agreed that the number of delegates that will attend the Extraordinary Congress be reduced and the figure will be confirmed by the Politburo.

“The number of days will also be reduced. We now expect that it will be held over three days, which will obviously mean that the budget will be cut drastically.”

The ruling party had initially drawn up an $8 million budget for the Congress that was set to run from December 12 to December 17.

Over 6 000 delegates were expected to attend.

Khaya Moyo said preparations for the mega event were going on well.

“Everything is going on well and everything will be finalised this coming week,” he said. “It’s certainly not going to be a heavy Extraordinary Congress as we had thought before.

“All sub-committees are working well and we believe that the chairpersons of provinces, who attended yesterday’s (Saturday) meeting, will ensure that everything goes according to plan and mobilise the delegates that will attend the Congress.”

The revolutionary party has established sub-committees to prepare for the Congress.

The sub-committees are the documentation and legal, finance, security, transport and welfare, health, entertainment, environment and tourism, and information and organising.

The sub-committees will report to the Congress.

Delegates expected to attend the event include members of the Central Com­mittee, National Consultative Assem­bly, National Council of the Women’s League, National Council of the Youth League, Provincial Executive Coun­cils and all district chairpersons from the main wing, Women and Youth Leagues.

Several foreign delegates are also expected for the event.

The Congress is expected to endorse the recalling of former President Robert Mugabe from the party and the installation of President Emmerson Mnangagwa as the First Secretary and President by the Central Committee on November 19.

The Central Committee also indicated that President Mnangagwa would be the party’s presidential candidate in the 2018 harmonised elections.

President Mnangagwa has since been sworn-in as the State President.

The Congress is also expected to uphold the decision by the Central Committee to expel G40 cabal members such as former First Lady Grace Mugabe, Phelekezela Mphoko, Jonathan Moyo, Saviour Kasukuwere, Ignatius Chombo, Walter Mzembi, Kudzanai Chipanga, Mandi Chimene, Letina Undenge and many others.

These were dismissed for fanning divisions in the party and threatening national security through corruption and rendering Government programmes dysfunctional.

Some of them, like Chombo and Chipanga, have since appeared in court facing charges ranging from corruption to undermining State apparatus.

The Congress is also expected to discuss the state of the party, the economy and preparations for next year’s harmonised elections, including the manifesto for the polls.

Following the intervention by the Zimbabwe Defence Forces to pacify the situation, the ruling party is now shifting its attention to dealing with economic challenges that are affecting the generality of the Zimbabwean population.

Already, there are indications that the Zanu-PF Government intends to intensify re-engagement process with the international community and pay more attention to a fast deteriorating economy, which is characterised by cash shortages, declining exports and a huge debt overhang.

The Congress will be held at Robert Mugabe Square in Harare.