Chinhoyi Member of Parliament Phillip Chiyangwa was indicted on unspecified charges relating to espionage.
He was indicted together with ZANU-PF deputy director for External Affairs Itai Mach, ambassador to Mozambique and former Consul-General in South Africa Godfrey Dzvairo, and Metropolitan Bank secretary Tendai Matambanadzo.
Chiyangwa had reportedly suffered a stroke during questioning and was taken to St. Giles hospital for rehabilitation but a United States embassy contact reported seeing a badly beaten Chiyangwa at St. Giles and reported that he was in fear of his life.
Viewing cable 04HARARE2090, RULING PARTY SETS DATE FOR PRIMARIES AMIDST MORE
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 HARARE 002090
AF/S FOR B. NEULING
NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR C. COURVILLE
E.O. 12958: DECL: 11/08/2009
SUBJECT: RULING PARTY SETS DATE FOR PRIMARIES AMIDST MORE
REF: (A) HARARE 2063 (B) HARARE 2001 (C) HARARE 73
Classified By: Classified by Charge d’Affaires Eric Schultz under Secti
on 1.5 b/d
¶1. (U) SUMMARY: ZANU-PF announced that it will conduct its
primaries for the March national parliamentary elections on
January 15. Intra-party violence has already begun to rise.
Fights between supporters of two sitting ZANU-PF MPs and the
supporters of their party rivals in two hotly-contested seats
resulted in the arrest of a number of partisans, including
the two MPs. All of those arrested were quickly released.
Separately, four prominent party figures have been
incarcerated on unspecified charges associated with suspected
espionage, according to press reports. END SUMMARY.
ZANU-PF Primaries Announced
¶2. (U) ZANU-PF National Commissar Elliott Manyika announced
December 28 that the party’s parliamentary primaries would be
conducted on January 15. According to local press reports,
Manyika said that candidates would be limited to members of
provincial executives, the National Consultative Assembly, or
the Central Committee. In addition, sitting members of
Parliament could run provided there were no disciplinary
cases pending against them.
¶3. (U ) Manyika was also reported to have said that at least
one third of the constituencies would be occupied by women
without, however, explaining the means by which such a quota
would be met. He also reiterated the admonition of President
Mugabe and other senior party officials that political
violence, including intra-party violence, would not be
tolerated. Manyika made no mention of a requirement that
candidates must have been members of the party for at least
five years — a measure rumored to be under consideration in
order to exclude certain “Young Turks,” such as discredited
Information Minister Jonathan Moyo.
¶4. (U) Despite Mugabe,s admonition, political violence
ticked up this past week, principally within ZANU-PF. On
December 26, a scuffle broke out between supporters of two
rival ZANU-PF candidates for the Makonde seat (Mashonaland
West): the incumbent Kindness Paradza (publisher of the
shuttered Tribune newspaper) and the President’s nephew, Leo
Mugabe. The scuffle resulted in the arrest of Paradza and
two of his supporters as well as four of Leo Mugabe’s
supporters on December 27. All were released on bail the
following day. Paradza became the second sitting ZANU-PF
legislator arrested this month. Earlier in December,
Hurungwe West MP Mark Madiro was arrested following
skirmishes between his supporters and the supporters of
Cecilia Gwachiwa, a ZANU-PF rival for his seat.
¶5. (S/NF) The GOZ-controlled Herald newspaper reported on
December 30 that four prominent figures had been indicted on
December 29 on unspecified charges relating to their
involvement in espionage: Chinhoyi MP and ZANU-PF Provincial
Chairman for Mashonaland West Philip Chiyangwa (who is also
indirectly related to President Mugabe), ZANU-PF Deputy
Director for External Affairs Itai Mach, Ambassador to
Mozambique and former Consul-General in South Africa Godfrey
Dzvairo, and Metropolitan Bank Secretary Tendai Matambanadzo.
Local newspapers reported that Chiyangwa suffered a stroke
during questioning and was taken to St. Giles hospital for
rehabilitation. However, one Embassy contact reported seeing
a badly beaten Chiyangwa at St. Giles, and reported that he
was in fear for his life. Earlier press reports indicated
that ZANU-PF Deputy Security Chief Kenny Karidza had been
seized with the others for questioning in mid-December but he
was not named among the indicted. Earlier press reports also
fingered the British and Israelis as the “hostile foreign
powers” that had suborned those detained, although the latest
Herald reporting curiously omitted mention of any foreign
government. Sensitive reporting indicates that South Africa
was the only government involved.
¶6. (C) The recent arrests and general bloodletting within
the ZANU-PF in the run-up to and aftermath of the Party
Congress (ref A) testify further to the brittleness of party
unity and will fuel simmering intra-party resentments and
paranoia. The GOZ will likely portray the arrest of these
and other alleged perpetrators of violence to SADC as
evidence of its intent to conduct a peaceful election in
accord with SADC election principles. However, we fully
expect political violence to increase (including against the
MDC should it re-enter the race) in the run-up to elections.
And consistent with historical patterns here, those who
retaliate or defend themselves (be they ZANU-PF or MDC) will
often get punished more than those who initiated the
¶7. (S/NF) The implications of the espionage case are
potentially far-reaching. It will certainly add to the
paralyzing witch-hunt atmosphere within the party,
particularly since the GOZ has not divulged details about the
case that would put to rest the many rumors circulating.
With respect to foreign policy, the GOZ can be expected to
keep quiet about South Africa,s role in order to exert
additional leverage on Pretoria, including in scripting SADC
engagement on Zimbabwe’s elections.