Mashonaland East Zanu-PF provincial chairperson Ray Kaukonde whose head has been on the bullseye since Dr Amai took captainship of the faction vessel steered to detour vice president Joyce Mujuru was yesterday kicked out of office through a vote of no confidence passed on him and some members of his executive. Kaukonde tallies the number of ousted provincial chairs to eight.
The other Zanu-PF provincial chairpersons deposed in recent weeks were Temba Mliswa (Mashonaland West), Callisto Gwanetsa (Masvingo), Jason Machaya (Midlands), Amos Midzi (Harare), Andrew Langa (Matabeleland South), Professor Callistus Ndlovu (Bulawayo) and John Mvundura (Manicaland).
Phineas Chihota who replaces Kaukonde yesterday said 27 members of the provincial executive out of 50 voted for the ouster of Kaukonde and seven other members of his executive.
“Members of the executive passed the vote of no confidence on Cde Kaukonde because they doubted his sincerity in terms of driving programmes while he was also working against the party by fanning factionalism,” he said.
“He was also taking advantage of other people including women in implementation of programmes as well as practicing individualism.”
Other member of the Kaukonde executive team to face the chop were political commissar Tendai Makunde and his deputy George Katsande, deputy secretary for security Washington Musvaire, deputy secretary for finance Felix Mhona, secretary for education Taurai Pasirai, secretary for administration Peter Murwira and Boniface Mutize.
Last week, war veterans, youths and women attempted to pass a vote of no confidence against Kaukonde after a demonstration in Marondera, but their move was of no effect as it was not constitutional.
Kaukonde was bizarrely fingered by First Lady Grace Mugabe as the financial kingpin of a plot led by Vice President Joice Mujuru to oust President Mugabe.
The First Lady said Kaukonde was wearing a fake smile for the First Family when he was at the forefront of denigrating the President, much to the amusement of the then provincial chair who did not see the tirade coming.
Political commentator Sanderson Makombe said,
“what is clear in these Zanu PF evictions is that as Mugabe has remained the undisputed Head of State, Mujuru has been the undisputed party leader for some time now. 8 out of 10 provinces have been in Mujuru’s control and it seems a considerable number of key political and security personnel too.”
“Thus Mugabe had to rely on an external organisation as shock troopers, the War Vets, to wrestle control of the Party from Mujuru. Mugabe must be asking himself why he has been a lame duck First Secretary for this long.”