FIRED Vice-President Joice Mujuru is now seeking public sympathy through her statements while also challenging President Robert Mugabe for failing to address “bread and butter” issues, analysts have said.
They said Mujuru’s statement on Monday where she denied allegations of trying to topple Mugabe was a jibe at the 90-year-old leader who was focusing on “ridiculous” and “unsubstantiated” allegations aimed at her.
Mujuru has been a subject of attacks from the First Family, ranging from corruption, plotting to assassinate Mugabe, witchcraft and extortion.
A top government official who declined to be named said Mujuru was simply trying to mobilise women and the generality of Zimbabweans to her cause.
“She is trying to project herself as an alternative power to the President. She has been in government since 1980, but now wants to project herself as an alternative within the ruling Zanu PF, that she is determined and can deal with the so-called simple challenges Zimbabweans are facing,” the bureaucrat said.
Political analyst Pedzisai Ruhanya said the essence of Mujuru’s statement was to tell the nation of Mugabe’s failed leadership, while also calling for leadership renewal in the party.
Ruhanya said the letter was addressed to Mugabe and the people of Zimbabwe and was meant to pre-empt her imminent dismissal from government.
“She got wind that the President would remove her from government and she could not go without a fight. It’s a direct rebuttal of Mugabe and Grace’s statements and she is replying to attacks by the Mugabes on issues of simplicity, corruption, witchcraft and several other allegations,” he said.
Political analyst Takura Zhangazha said Mujuru was making herself more vulnerable and her statement showed that she had no faith in internal Zanu PF processes to solve her case and was resorting to appealing for public sympathy.
“The fact that the VP has found it necessary to put out a public statement shows that she has little remedy within Zanu PF to have issues addressed in a manner she feels is fair and transparent. It’s an appeal to Zanu PF and the public to hear her side of the story even though she won’t be replied directly by the President or Zanu PF,” Zhangazha said.
Another analyst Ibbo Mandaza said: “She is just stating her case. Her statement is an apt and timely message immediately after the congress. All these serious allegations have been reduced to rumour-mongering by people circling the President. It confirms the perception by the public that all the allegations are a hatchet job at best. I believe the statement is addressed to the President in many respects to whom she pledged her loyalty and she makes it clear that she is still loyal to him.”
Ernest Mudzengi, an analyst as well, said Mujuru’s statement came upon realising that her name had been dragged in the mud.
“She realised that her name had been brought into disrepute by reports and she felt that she had to cleanse herself. I don’t think it will save her. She was ejected from the party. Mugabe made it clear she won’t get anything by virtue of her not being at the congress,” Mudzengi said.
Commenting on the NewsDay website, followers said Mujuru’s statement, particularly on service delivery focus, was an attempt to gain public sympathy which might not work as she has been part of the failed regime since 1980.
Wrote one reader only identified as Scott : “By publicly acknowledging the ‘problems’ faced by many in what she calls sharing ‘a few practical truths’, is she expressing a long-held desire and a willingness to solve these issues or is this a sad case of an attempt at self-preservation, hoping to inspire public sympathy? In a way, she is still using us, the public.”
Another commentator identified as Makwinja said: “Suddenly when they fall from the gravey train, they realise Zimbabwe has problems that need solving. For 34 years, she has been part and parcel of the system that ran down the economy yet she did nothing to solve the problems. She even delayed the introduction of mobile phones business by trying to stop Econet from introducing the business. She went further to call (the late Vice-President) Joshua Nkomo old and senile when he tried to intervene.”