The Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front annual conference which is being held in the resort town of Victoria Falls will test the private media’s credibility.
Though the party has insisted that this is a review meeting not an elective one at which the party will assess its progress in 2015 and what needs to be done in 2016- the theme being: Consolidating the people’s power under ZimAsset, the private media has been persistent that heads will roll at the conference, the main target being Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The private media says a faction of ZANU-PF, known as G40, will insist that First Lady Grace Mugabe is elevated to thwart Mnangagwa from taking over.
It also says that the party will insist that the women’s quota, that one of the vice-presidents should be a woman, will be reinstated. But though Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko are of the same rank, it is only Mnangagwa who will be affected.
ZANU-PF has been riddled with faction fighting since its 2014 congress which purged heavyweights like Joice Mujuru, Didymus Mutasa and Rugare Gumbo.
The private media insists, the infighting pits Mnangagwa against the so-called G40 which comprises the Young Turks like commissar Saviour Kasukuwere, President Robert Mugabe’s nephew Patrick Zhuwao and Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo.
Moyo insists that G40 is a demographic group not a faction of ZANU-PF. Vice-President Mphoko has rubbished G40 as myth. ZANU-PF women’s league secretary for administration is in trouble for shouting: “Pasi neG40”.
The drama goes on, until the Saturday when the conference passes its critical resolutions.
The question is: Will the conference prove the private media wrong? If it does, what would this mean for the credibility of the private media and of ZANU-PF itself, especially the “insiders” who have been feeding the private media with information?