HARARE – President Emmerson Mnangagwa has warned some Zanu-PF party members behaving like loose cannons discussing internal issues outside party structures to stop such behaviour or risk being kicked out of the party.
He said the revolutionary party had a clear channel of airing out grievances that should be used by all members who feel aggrieved.
Addressing members of the youth league during a youth assembly meeting held at Zanu-PF headquarters in Harare yesterday, President Mnangagwa called for dialogue and self-introspection among party members.
“Party officials at every level are expected and obligated by the constitution to be faithful and loyal to the ideals, values and principles of the party,” said President Mnangagwa.
“They are further required to strive continuously to raise the level of social, political and economic consciousness and understanding of party policies. If you have a problem with the party, you don’t debate it with the world. The world is not the party. If you have a problem with the party it must be discussed in the party and not outside it, but if you insist then you are asking us to kick you from the party so that you can freely debate your party outside our party.”
President Mnangagwa continued: “In Zanu-PF, we have our ways of airing out grievances from the grassroots to the top. If one says he or she is a member of Zanu-PF, we expect that person to understand party procedures on airing out grievances. These days we are hearing some voices from the wilderness speaking and splitting the party.
“In the bible, John the Baptist who was in the wilderness was speaking holy things relating to the coming of Jesus Christ but the ones we are talking about in our party are saying things meant to destroy the party. They are bringing disharmony in the party.
“We are warning them that no, we are now seeing your nakedness. Dress up and return to the others.”
Turning to the way the party was operating following the deployment of some senior members as full time employees of the party, President Mnangagwa said: “ We resolved as the leadership that we should strengthen the party and some of our senior members should work as full time employees of the party…
“There are so many business people who support us as a party. Now they know the party also loves them so they are supporting us.
“After elections our mantra is ‘Unity at all levels’. Yes we have opened up the democratic space and people can air out their views. But after debating, the voice of the majority should prevail. That is why our revolution was successful. We don’t want those who say if my views have not prevailed, the party is to blame.”
Earlier, the youths had introduced a new slogan 2023: ED Pfee, which President Mnangagwa said he was happy with.
The youths said the slogan was a clear signal to some who were already whispering in the corridors that President Mnangagwa should serve a single term.
The youths said President Mnangagwa should serve his two five-year terms as enshrined in the constitution.
President Mnangagwa hailed the youths for pioneering several slogans that saw the ruling party winning resoundingly in the last harmonised elections. He said it was the youths who coined the slogan ED: Pfee and #edhasmyvote.
He urged Zanu-PF members to ignore some sideshows by the opposition in particular MDC-Alliance, which purportedly inaugurated Mr Nelson Chamisa as president recently.
He said in a democratic country people were free to express themselves and should be ignored as such.
Before President Mnangagwa addressed the youths, Zanu-PF secretary for youth affairs Pupurai Togarepi took a swipe at some party officials criticising the Government initiated grain import substitution programme — the Command Agriculture.
Said Togarepi: “We have programmes that have been successful than any other programmes. I had an opportunity of being a member of the party since 1980, the best programme ever has been Command Agriculture. It is very clean and clear and we want to protect it as youths. We are also going to be beneficiaries because the President said after downsizing, youths are going to get land. So Command Agriculture should remain in place so that when the youths get land, they succeed in their farming activities.”
The national youth assembly meeting was also attended by the party’s Second Secretary and Vice President CKembo Mohadi, national chairman Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri and several Politburo members who are now working as full time party employees.