SENIOR Zanu PF officials in the Midlands province are
reportedly baying for Gokwe-Nembudziya legislator Justice Mayor Wadyajena’s
blood and are seeking his expulsion from the ruling party for his alleged
involvement in the US$5,8 million fraud and money-laundering cases.
NewsDay, however, understands that President Emmerson
Mnangagwa is allegedly protecting his long-time ally, saying the party can only
expel Wadyajena (pictured) after the court has concluded the case.
Wadyajena and three Cotton Company of Zimbabwe officials,
currently on $100 000 bail each, were dragged to court to answer to charges of
fraud and money laundering involving over US$5 million.
The case has reportedly prompted spirited efforts by senior
Zanu PF officials in Mnangagwa’s Midlands home province to expel Wadyajena from
the party for bringing the ruling party’s name into disrepute.
Sources in the party told NewsDay that veteran party
officials July Moyo, Simbarashe Mumbengegwi and Mike Bimha approached Midlands
provincial chairperson Larry Mavima asking him to write a letter expelling
Wadyajena from the ruling party.
“The trio were unequivocal about their demands. They cited
Priscah Mupfumira, who was fired in Mashonaland West for the same allegations,”
the source said.
Former Tourism minister Mupfumira was expelled from the
party after spending 21 days in remand prison after being arrested over
After incessant pressure from senior leaders, it is alleged
Mavima consulted a senior politburo member in the province, Jorum Gumbo, who
advised him to seek clearance from Mnangagwa.
“If they want to leave the party, they can. Wadyajena is
not going anywhere. How do you expel someone based on allegations? We will only
act after court processes if there is a conviction and an appeal is lodged and
he loses,” Mnangagwa is said to have told Mavima.
Mnangagwa’s stance, largely seen to be an act of protecting
Wadyajena, is said to have irked the senior party members, who have been
accused of recently fighting to ensure the Gokwe-Nembudziya legislator falls
out with their party leader.
The move also comes amid growing divisions in the party
ahead of the 2023 elections as members jostle for positions and influence,
often pitting Mnangagwa against other senior members.
Highly-placed sources said Wadyajena had stopped enjoying
“unrestricted” access to Mnangagwa for a while before his arrest.
When contacted for comment, Mavhima professed ignorance
over the issue.
“I am sick and tired of people who want to cause divisions
in the party. There are some people who do not want unity in the party. They
just want verbal exchanges serving their own interest. We are not going to be
fighting, we are all united behind President Emmerson Mnangagwa,” he said.
Zanu PF political commissar Mike Bimha refuted the claims
that he approached Mavima.
“Zanu PF is an organised party and it follows due
processes. I cannot just pick up the phone and instruct a senior member like
Mavima to expel someone. If there are issues, a disciplinary hearing will be
conducted,” he said.
Contacted for comment, Gumbo said: “I met Mavima during the
weekend at a party meeting in the Midlands. I did not speak to him about that
issue and none of the people you mentioned spoke to me about that issue. I want
to emphasise that I did not meet Mavima privately during or after the meeting
Efforts to get a comment from Moyo and Mumbengegwi were
fruitless as their phones were not being answered.
Mnangagwa’s spokesperson George Charamba could also not be
reached for comment. Newsday