Jenfan Muswere The New Information Minister

Jenfan Muswere
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HARARE – President Emmerson Mnangagwa has appointed Dr. Jenfan Muswere as the new Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services. He holds a Masters of Commerce in Business Administration and a PhD in Strategic Management and Leadership.

He replaces Monica Mutvangwa who was moved to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises Development. Earlier this year, in a speech, Mnangagwa complained that his information department was not doing enough to sell his programmes. Mutsvangwa’s removal from the post is a win for a faction in Mnangagwa’s office, who had fought her for control of the government’s information levers.

Jenfan Muswere has moved from the Ministry of Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services (ICTPCS). He struggled to effectively represent Mutsvangwa at Cabinet press briefings and now faces the task of improving the department’s public relations and the declining standards of state media.

Muswere is a favourite of Mnangagwa;

When Muswere lost in the ZANU PF primaries in Makoni West, the winner, Moses Ruwona, was arrested. Subsequently, Muswere was imposed as a candidate. Following his appointment as ICT Minister, there were claims that he received the position as a reward for assisting President Emmerson Mnangagwa during the 2017 coup that ousted President Robert Mugabe.

A book called “Two Weeks in November” by Douglas Rogers revealed Muswere’s active involvement in the coup, including providing fuel for the anti-Mugabe march and aiding Mnangagwa’s escape from the country. Muswere also kept Mnangagwa and his son informed of developments while they were in a safe house in Pretoria.

Read the extract below:

…Meanwhile, as the failed medivac was being arranged, Jenfan Muswere had driven back to the Helensvale house three times to get food, clothes and documents. “I drove the back way, down Borrowdale Brook Road, past the Blue Roof to avoid suspicion.” Presidential Guard soldiers stood sentry at its ornate gates. Behind its high walls, the President and First Lady were enjoying a peaceful night.

…You want the closing of a circle? These are the offices of Connecor, the investment company belonging to Emmerson Jr and his Indian friend, KC Shetty, mentioned in the prologue of this book. Junior had turned it over to Dr Jenfan Muswere, one of the people who’d helped ED escape, and Jenfan had turned it into a political command centre for Lacoste operations. They called it The Pentagon. One of the reasons so many people had gathered in the Avenues for the march, it turned out, was because Jenfan had distributed free fuel, water and printed posters to Lacoste supporters from this very building. Moreover, these past couple of days, assisted by Monica Mutsvangwa, war veterans and allies in the Youth League, Jenfan had worked with ZANU-PF’s ten provincial committees to coordinate and drive the resolutions to recall Mugabe as party leader, reinstate ED and expel Grace and leading members of G40.

Muswere kept in touch with the safe house in Pretoria, where President Mnangagwa and his son were strategising on how to impeach Mugabe. Muswere participated in the march and sent updates to Junior about the massive number of people on the streets. They discussed the need to push Mugabe out of power, and Muswere confidently declared that he was gone. Later, Muswere and Monica Mutsvangwa helped secure provincial resolutions that led to Mugabe’s recall and the expulsion of other G40 members. Eventually, Muswere was appointed Deputy Minister of Information, Communications, Technology, and Cyber Security, leading to accusations of rewarding loyalty over qualifications.

While serving in the Ministry of ICT, Muswere received criticism, particularly when a video of him being interviewed about Artificial Intelligence (AI) went viral on social media. Many found his performance in the interview to be disappointing and lacking. This led to further scrutiny and negative feedback during his time in the ministry.