FORMER Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education Professor Jonathan Moyo is trying to set up structures that include think-tanks, NGOs and externally-supported media organisations in a bid to ratchet up pressure against President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration, it has been learnt.
In the same vein, Prof Moyo is allegedly persuading some G40 members to join forces with the MDC-T, but is facing resistance as quite a number of the members that include Saviour Kasukuwere, Makhosini Hlongwane and Walter Mzembi have been reaching out to Zanu-PF begging to be re-admitted into the party as ordinary members.
Soon after resurfacing from his hideout, Mzembi called on Prof Moyo and Kasukuwere to come back home, an indication that he was not willing to be part of Prof Moyo’s project.
State media says Prof Moyo’s project is set to fail dismally as other former Zanu-PF members who had gone to different opposition political parties like Kudakwashe Bhasikiti and Marian Chombo are also reaching out in a bid to be re-admitted into Zanu-PF.
On the other hand, the MDC-T is against Prof Moyo’s project as the opposition party seems to be struggling with its own version of the G40 that is fomenting divisions in the party.
A high-ranking G40 member who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of victimisation told our Harare Bureau that Prof Moyo has been making frantic efforts for the G40 members to meet at a neutral venue outside South Africa and Kenya to iron out the modalities of his project.
The G40 member revealed that former Minister of Pubic Service, Labour and Social Welfare Patrick Zhuwao’s wife Beauty and Tongai Kasukuwere, a former high-ranking Zanu-PF Youth League member, were being used as the runners in the project.
Repeated efforts to get a comment from the two were fruitless yesterday as their mobile phones were either not being answered or not reachable.
“I was approached to be part of the team co-ordinating the project on the ground. Due to emotions, during the first days I bought into the idea but later realised that we were on a wild goose chase. While I was still in it, Prof Moyo spoke about establishing think-tanks, NGOs and externally-funded media organisations to ratchet up pressure against the new Government.
“He promised that he would use his American connections to source funding for these structures. I actually think he already has some funding. He also told us that the main focus of the project would be Mashonaland East, Mashonaland West and Mashonaland Central and so he further suggested that besides the MDC-T, we should reach out to Mai Mujuru’s party,” said the G40 member.
Contacted for comment yesterday, MDC- T national spokesperson Mr Obert Gutu could neither confirm nor deny that Prof Moyo had reached out to his party.
“I have not had the opportunity to verify those allegations. I have no official confirmation on that issue. We are a big party, I have not had the opportunity to speak to everyone because of the holidays. There has been a lot of speculation especially on the social media so I am yet to verify the matter,” said Mr Gutu.
The G40 member said after closely scrutinising the project, they discovered that; “Prof Moyo’s idea was not to win power but to deny it to the new Government. What created more problems is that Prof Moyo is holed up in Kenya while quite a number of G40 members are in South Africa.
“As a result, co-ordination became a nightmare and at one time Prof Moyo suggested that we meet at a neutral venue. The biggest challenge was that most G40 members are struggling financially and the idea of a neutral venue was quickly abandoned.”
The G40 member said what has really rattled many G40 members was “the sinister way Prof Moyo has been trying to play the regional and tribal card to destabilise the country”.
Said the G40 member: “Prof Moyo is not making it a secret that Gukurahundi is going to be his weapon against this new dispensation. He is now claiming ownership of the Gukurahundi Bill that he denied ownership while still in Zanu-PF.
“He has been boasting that he once pushed the Bill while he was an Independent MP. He says he worked with the opposition in trying to push the Bill through Parliament but was betrayed by some opposition MPs. He also told us that he suspects that former Clerk of Parliament Austin Zvoma frustrated his efforts to have the Bill passed.”
After failing to push the Bill through Parliament, Prof Moyo then decided to rejoin Zanu-PF. As soon as he rejoined Zanu-PF, the professor disowned the Bill.
“Remember during the 21st February Movement celebrations in Matobo, Prof Moyo and Saviour Kusukuwere posed for pictures with Dumiso Dabengwa in Bulawayo. They knew what they were doing.
“Now he is trying to spruce up his appeal in Matabeleland from afar by once again dusting the Gukurahundi Bill. We were talking about it the other day that for Prof Moyo, as long as he is in Zanu-PF, Gukurahundi is dead. When he is out of Zanu-PF, Gukurahundi comes alive. We discovered that for him, it’s never about conviction but convenience regarding the Gukurahundi issue. We felt Prof Moyo was trying to use us in his personal agendas.
“Can you imagine he has been heard in some circles saying there is no politician from Matabeleland who would want closure of the Gukurahundi issue.
He says once that happens, politicians from Matabeleland lose relevance and won’t have an emotional trigger to continue linking them with the ordinary people in Matabeleland. He openly boasts that even if we had no Gukurahundi, we would have to invent it because it’s a tool we use to negotiate with Zanu-PF for accommodation,” said the G40 member.
The G40 member added that overtures by Prof Moyo to the MDC-T had found no takers as the party indicated that it was facing its own internal challenges. “As you know the MDC-T is facing its own G40 version that is causing divisions in the opposition. They can’t import another G40 and worse still, MDC-T is rooted on the ground while Prof Moyo is trying to play telescopic politics from Kenya. What can he achieve from that far and through Twitter?” asked the G40 member.