Masvingo – In a move which came as a surprise in the deeply divided Zanu PF party, the G40 faction last Saturday bulked under factional pressure and called for ceasefire with Team Lacoste as the party struggles to find common ground in the run up to its conference slated for December in Masvingo.
Alleged G40 front man, Saviour Kasukuwere, who is also the Zanu PF Political Commissar, descended on Masvingo last Saturday for a Provincial Coordinating Committee (PCC) meeting where he frantically tried to pacify the two warring factions
Held at Victoria Junior Primary school, the meeting saw G40 stewards making stunning compromises which included reversing the recent suspension of eleven party members who are linked to the rival Team Lacoste faction.
The 11 are Alois Baloyi, Jeyas Masosota, Ignatius Murindi, Zvepano Munganasa, Buster Mafio, Godhati Dunira Hungwe, Mucharevei Chamisa, Zindari Prisca Moyo, Susan Madzivadondo, Brian Munyoro and Senderai Manyanga.
Other suspected Team Lacoste sympathisers are, however, wary of the latest peace overtures form G40, suspecting their rivals are not acting in good faith but only want to use them for a successful congress and then chuck them out thereafter.
After the meeting, Kasukuwere told TellZim News it was high time the party regrouped to fight from the same corner.
"This meeting was a follow up to all meetings that the province held with the president to try to resolve factional issues. The meeting managed to achieve unity among political leaders in the province. They have since decided to work together as one unit with a target of defeating the opposition. We are having a fresh start.
"To support this, we have asked all parliamentarians to do their work with a known diary so that we can always come and support their events as national executive. This will even revive the hope of party supporters who had been disturbed by dirty fights which had engulfed the party. All in all, we are looking forward to strengthened party structures," Kasukuwere said.
On reports that factional fights in the province centred on control of sugar giant Tongaat Hullet's land, Kasukuwere said the rightful response on government position towards the controversial 'cane-cake' can only be answered by lands minister Douglas Mombeshora.
Alleged Team Lacoste diehard and one of the most senior party members in the province, Josaya Hungwe, however, seemed to be setting conditions for any possible ceasefire, saying party members must respect their superiors if unity was to prevail.
Hungwe has been at the receiving end of G40 fire lately, with junior members openly calling for his dismissal form the party for allegedly undermining President Robert Mugabe.
Others have also accused him of corruptly giving himself vast tracks of land in the province and confiscating resources from Tongaat Hullet for himself.
"I am happy with this development and I wish that this peace goes far, until elections. I have been a troubled man in the past but today, I am a happy man because with unity, things will definitely shape up. I am not at all vindictive because even the gospel tells that at some time, people get into nasty wars and finally unite for a developmental cause," said Hungwe.
"To achieve this unity, I urge all party members to be respectful because lack of respect has led to divisions. The President also instructed me as an elder to listen to juniors so I will listen to them and from them, I expect openness. It would not be good after saying we are united to hear that there was a meeting in Chiredzi without my knowledge," Hungwe said.
Zanu PF insiders, however, dismissed all semblance of unity saying the recent ructions in the party cultivated deep grudges that cannot simply be wished away like that.
Deep-rooted enmity between Gutu South MP Dr Paul Chimedza and Provincial Affairs Minister, Shuvai Mahofa, who reportedly instigated Dr Chimedza's suspension from the party in 2014, is said to be still raging.
During the meeting, Talent Chivange a youth member allegedly aligned to the G40 faction was allowed into the meeting while alleged Team Lacoste youth firebrand, Finos Makwarimba was thrown out for suggesting that there be elections to choose substantive Provincial Executive members.news