Twenty years ago- Political scheming


The popularity of John Nkomo, now Minister of Labour, Manpower Planning and Social Welfare  nearly cost him his political career and according to sources he was only saved by the personal intervention of President Mugabe and Vice-President Muzenda.

This seems to explain why he was tossed around as a Parliamentary candidate in last year’s general elections.

The sources say John Nkomo’s political career was put at stake by the powerful but highly secretive cabinet-behind-the-cabinet, the so-called Committee of 26, which advised Vice-President Joshua Nkomo to get rid of John Nkomo because he had become so popular that he was a threat to Joshua Nkomo’s leadership.

As part of the scheme John Nkomo was told he could not stand in Nyamandlovu where he had been nominated unopposed.

He was told to stand in Lobengula but once again the schemers felt this was too safe a seat. As a last resort they decided to field him in Bulawayo North where they believed he could be beaten by the ZUM candidate as voters in low density suburbs were considered too liberal.

Nkomo, however, won the seat polling 8 581 against Chrispen Mwete of ZUM’s 4 550 votes.

-From The Insider February 1991


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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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