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Mnangagwa set to launch major government shakeup

President Emmerson Mnangagwa, pictured, who replaced long-time ruler Robert Mugabe in July ©Getty Images

HARARE – President Emmerson Mnangagwa is set to implement a major shake-up of the bureaucracy in the coming weeks with several high-profile departures and appointments.

Misheck Sibanda, the chief secretary to the president and cabinet who has been in the job for 20 years is set to leave his position after reaching retirement age, as will Prince Machaya, the attorney general.

Mnangagwa is also set to name a new boss for the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) and appoint a new Prosecutor General, ZimLive has been briefed.

The shake-up will also spread to the Central Intelligence Organisation where Mnangagwa has told deputy director general Walter Tapfumaneyi that he wants him to join the diplomatic service. Tapfumaneyi reportedly superintended over the Zanu PF-affiliated Forever Associates of Zimbabwe (FAZ) which was flagged by several election observer missions as leading an intimidation campaign against opposition supporters during last month’s general elections.

“He became very emotional in the meeting with Mnangagwa,” a source said about Tapfumaneyi. “He feels he is being demoted, and not rewarded for FAZ’s election activities which he believes secured Mnangagwa victory.”

Sibanda and Machiya are set to leave their positions after reaching the retirement age of 65, while the prosecutor general position is vacant following Kumbirai Hodzi’s resignation in March last year. Nelson Mutsonziwa has been acting.

Under amended regulations announced in 2020, the Public Service Commission (PSC) said public servants appointed on pensionable terms of service before May 1, 1992, have a pensionable age of 65 while those appointed on or after that date have a pensionable age of 60 years.

The dominoes could start falling with Justice Loice Matanda-Moyo being removed as the country’s top anti-corruption boss, ZimLive understands.

Matanda-Moyo could return to the bench or become prosecutor general, although Mnangagwa is also reported to be considering justice secretary Virginia Mabiza as the country’s next top prosecutor. Former deputy attorney general Florence Ziyambi, the ex-wife of justice minister Ziyambi Ziyambi, remains a dark horse.

Mabiza, who is coming to the end of her second and final five-year-term as permanent secretary, is also a candidate for next chief secretary to the president and cabinet, but Sibanda’s current deputy Martin Rushwaya remains a firm favourite.

Mnangagwa is understood to favour lawyer Thembinkosi Magwaliba as his next attorney general.

Mnangagwa was last month declared winner of contested elections for his second and final five-year term. He announced a cabinet full of his close associates, including his son and nephew.

The 81-year-old is also reportedly planning to create a formal government role for his son, Emmerson Junior, who could be made a director or adviser to the president.

Emmerson Junior has sat in several meetings where Mnangagwa met foreign investors.

“The president wants to justify his presence in those meetings and so a government role could be created,” the source said. – ZimLive

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Zambian President fires Information Minister amid rising tensions over a collapsing economy

Chushi Kasanda

THE embattled Zambian President Hakainde Hichilema has terminated Chushi Kasanda’s appointment as Information and Media Minister, replacing her with UPND spokesperson and Southern Province Minister Cornelius Mweetwa.

The President has also removed Dr Anna Songolo from the office of Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries and has further appointed Thabo Kawana as Ministry of Information and Media Permanent Secretary.

Meanwhile, President Hichilema has appointed Dr Ron Mwambwa as Auditor General, subject to ratification by the National Assembly.

According to a statement issued by State House Chief Communications Specialist Clayson Hamasaka, Monday, the President has appointed Princess Kasune as Central Province Minister after transferring Credo Nanjuwa to be Minister for Southern Province

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Zimbabwean ruling party labels EU withdrawal of electoral body funding as a none-event

HARARE – Zanu PF has scoffed at the European Union’s decision to withdraw a US$5 million funding for the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) following the contested August general election describing the move as a non-event.

The ruling party further said the government is capable of funding ZEC without any help.

ZEC was set up as an independent election monitor by the constitution.

Last week, the EU announced that it was withdrawing funds following the conclusion of the polls which were denounced by the EU, Carter Center, SADC, AU Electoral Observer Missions (EOM) in their preliminary reports.

In response, Zanu PF Acting Director of Information Farai Marapira said, “Responding to questions on the intention of ZEC funding withdrawal by the European Union, Zanu PF wishes to make it abundantly clear that it respects the decisions of the EU as an independent body.

“On the same note, Zanu PF is cognizant of the fact that ZEC is a constitutional body funded by the government through the treasury. Withdrawals of any and all additional funding remains a non-event.

“The EU commission is an independent entity which has got its rights to make its own decisions and if they chose to do a rescission of their funding that’s their own decision it is not a serious matter for us to consider or to look at.

“ZEC is a constitutionally mandated organization and the government has an obligation to fund all the activities of ZEC and we are capable of doing that by ourselves so whether the EU chooses to fund or not to fund is neither here nor there with us it’s a non-event,” Marapira said.

The decision by the EU follows demands for a rerun by the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) which has described the elections as a gigantic fraud.

Zanu PF’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa won the election with 52.6 percent ahead of opposition leader Nelson Chamisa who got 44 percent.

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Ignatius Chombo’s ally Memory Mucherahowa says “Zim football is now run by Zanu PF”

Memory Mucherahowa

THE United Kingdom-based former Zimbabwe national football team player and Dynamos captain Memory ‘Gwenzi’ Mucherahowa who is related former Zanu PF cabinet Minister Ignatius Chombo and the late ex Dynamos Chairman Richard Chiminya says Zanu PF has destroyed soccer in the country and everything else – people’s lives, families and the nation.

As a result, the ruling party must be removed from power for the country to go forward.

In a live Facebook interview with prominent broadcaster Ezra Tshisa Sibanda, the straight-talking Mucherahowa, known for use of juju that got him the nickname Gwenzi – while emphasising he wasn’t a political activist but someone whose life has been ruined by politics, said Zanu PF has now captured local football teams, particularly Dynamos and also Highlanders through Sakunda sponsorship.

Mucherahowa is one of Chamisa’s big supporters.

Explaining his desire to become Dynamos chairman in future, Mucherahowa said he can’t join the team currently because “it’s now Zanu PF”.

He said Sakunda is fronted by business mogul Kuda Tagwirei but is allegedly owned by President Emmerson Mnangagwa, hence football is now run by Zanu PF.

He also further said there were also other football clubs like FC Platinum and Ngezi Platinum in Zimbabwe also influenced by the ruling party.

He said Caps United owned by Zanu PF Murehwa West MP Farai Jere is also a ruling party project.

Mucherahowa, who won many titles with Dynamos and the Soccer Star of the Year in 1994, added that Zimbabwe is now unlivable as a country as Zanu PF has reduced it to ashes.

“Zanu PF has destroyed football, families, lives – everything,” Mucherahowa said.

He said due to this, he is not coming back to Zimbabwe anytime soon unless Zanu PF is gone.Mucherahowa said if he were to return home after criticising Zanu PF like this, he will be killed.

“They are killers, they have killed many people,” he said.

The legendary midfielder, who had a stint in Belgium and went to Argentina to try to join South African football legend Doctor Khumalo at Ferro Carril Oeste in 1995, said things must now change as “nothing really works in Zimbabwe”.

In his book, Zimbabwe legend Memory Mucherahowa has defended claims made in his autobiography that former club Dynamos encouraged the use of juju.

“There are so many things happening in African football which people don’t know about so I decided to share my experiences with the fans.

“I don’t know whether it [juju] works but when I was doing it, it was because it was part of the package of playing football.”

As captain of the club, Mucherahowa reveals in the book that it was his duty to make sure the juju rituals were followed.

“It was all about survival because we had families to feed and sometimes we’d end up doing things we didn’t believe in nor understand.

“I’m not saying juju works but it was part of football when I was playing and I’m sure it’s part of football even today.”

Mucherahowa, who retired in 2001 after captaining Dynamos for eight years, said he hopes that other players will speak up about the use of juju within the African game.

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