Former Vice-President Joice Mujuru and her allies are regrouping to salvage their plot to topple President Mugabe with assistance from the US Embassy in Harare which has assigned CIA agent Mr Eric Ryan Little to the project, it has been established.
Investigations by The Sunday Mail show that Mujuru’s chief lieutenant, Ray Kaukonde, returned to Zimbabwe in December to help co-ordinate the plan.
Kaukonde had fled to South Africa after details of the scheme became public in 2014.
Mujuru is said to have met him and other conspirators – among them former Zanu-PF secretary for administration Didymus Mutasa and sacked party spokesperson Rugare Gumbo – to “discuss the way forward”.
Mavambo/Kusile/Dawn leader Simba Makoni and ex-Zapu cadre Dumiso Dabengwa also figure in the plan.
Reliable sources disclosed that Mujuru is piggybacking her efforts on factional structures she created during her 10-year tenure as Zanu-PF’s Second Secretary and Vice President, and President Mugabe’s deputy in Government.
The sources said she wants to use these structures to destabilise Zanu-PF while pursuing several other avenues to unseat the President.
Gumbo is believed to be the point-man in the group’s liaison with the United States embassy in Harare, which has always played an active part in the scheme.
Through its second secretary (parliamentary affairs) Mr Little – the US embassy has been trying to get Members of Parliament to pass a vote of no confidence on President Mugabe.
Dabengwa – on the other hand – is said to be a willing partner as he was perturbed by the elevation of his Zapu comrade, Ambassador Phelekezela Mphoko, to the Vice-Presidency.
Mujuru declined commenting when The Sunday Mail visited her Harare home on Thursday.
A guard manning the gate said: “She is in the house, and I have told her that you want to see her, but she says she does not want to talk to you.”
Dabengwa dissociated himself from the conspirators and denied discussing his and Makoni’s co-option into their ranks.
“Last year I said I would work with anyone who was ready to move Zimbabwe forward and this is what I have repeated. Anything outside that is untrue. I have not been approached.”
Kaukonde and Mutasa could not be reached as their mobile phones went unanswered.
A source, however, told The Sunday Mail that Kaukonde was in Harare just before Christmas.