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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
00HARARE5829
2000-10-13 11:01:00
CONFIDENTIAL
Embassy Harare
Cable title:  

ZIMBABWE RULING PARTY IGNORING CLAMOR FOR

Tags:  PGOV PREL ECON ZI ZANU PF 
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131101Z Oct 00


                           CONFIDENTIAL     PTQ7414

PAGE 01        HARARE  05829  01 OF 03  131101Z 
ACTION AF-00    

INFO  LOG-00   NP-00    AID-00   ACQ-00   CEA-01   CIAE-00  COME-00  
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      EXIM-01  E-00     FAAE-00  VC-00    FRB-00   H-01     TEDE-00  
      INR-00   ITC-01   L-00     VCE-00   AC-01    NSAE-00  OMB-01   
      OPIC-01  PA-00    PM-00    PRS-00   ACE-00   P-00     SP-00    
      IRM-00   SSO-00   STR-00   TRSE-00  USIE-00  PMB-00   DSCC-00  
      DRL-02   G-00     NFAT-00  SAS-00     /009W
                  ------------------913C8E  131101Z /38    
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7355
INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY
						C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 HARARE 005829 

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/13/10
TAGS: PGOV PREL ECON ZI ZANU PF
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE RULING PARTY IGNORING CLAMOR FOR
CHANGE AT ITS OWN PERIL


CLASSIFIED BY CHARGE D'AFFAIRES EARL M. IRVING.
REASONS: 1.5 (B) AND (D).
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05829 01 OF 03 131101Z



1. (C) SUMMARY: POLITICAL PUNDITS AND WOULD-BE
REFORMERS ARE AGAIN RAISING THEIR HOPES THAT THE ZANU-PF
EXTRAORDINARY CONGRESS DUE TO BE HELD BY THE END OF THE
YEAR WILL RESULT IN THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF A SUCCESSOR TO
MUGABE AND A REJUVENATION OF THE PARTY. THE POPULATION
AT LARGE, VICTIMIZED BY THE PARTY'S ONGOING CAMPAIGN OF
TERROR AND ECONOMIC MISMANAGEMENT, IS INCREASINGLY EAGER
FOR A CHANGE OF LEADERSHIP. ZANU-PF'S LEADERSHIP,
HOWEVER, DOES NOT SEE, OR CHOOSES TO IGNORE, THE WRITING
ON THE WALL, AND IS LIKELY TO SQUELCH ANY ATTEMPTS BY
THE PARTY'S "YOUNG TURKS" TO ASSUME A GREATER ROLE IN
RUNNING THE COUNTRY. THE PARTY LEADERSHIP IS REDOUBLING
ITS EFFORTS TO CLAMP DOWN ON DISSENT AND IS FURTHER
ATTEMPTING TO CONCENTRATE POWER IN THE HANDS OF THE
PRESIDENT WHILE THE DEMAND FOR GREATER PLURALITY
INCREASES. THIS YEAR'S PARTY CONGRESS IS PROBABLY THE
LAST GOOD OPPORTUNITY FOR MANAGEABLE CHANGE WITHIN ZANU-
PF, AND, ONCE MISSED, WILL COME BACK TO HAUNT THE PARTY
MANY-FOLD IN 2002'S PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION. END SUMMARY.



2. (C) ACCORDING TO RECENT PRESS ARTICLES, THE
SUCCESSION ISSUE IS LIKELY TO COME UP AGAIN AT THIS
YEAR'S EXTRAORDINARY PARTY CONGRESS, DUE TO BE HELD BY
THE END OF THE YEAR (A DATE HAS NOT BEEN SET). ON
SEPTEMBER 29, ZANU-PF'S SECRETARY FOR ADMINISTRATION
DIDYMUS MUTASA ANNOUNCED THAT PRESIDENT MUGABE WOULD BE
THE PARTY'S NOMINEE FOR PRESIDENT IN 2002. THE DECISION
WAS REACHED AT A RECENT CENTRAL COMMITTEE MEETING,
APPARENTLY WITHOUT MUCH DEBATE. THE ANNOUNCEMENT SET
OFF A STIR WITHIN THE PARTY, AND THE LEADERSHIP HAS
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05829 01 OF 03 131101Z
SINCE BACKPEDALED, SAYING THAT THE PARTY'S NOMINEE WOULD
BE DETERMINED AT THE CONGRESS. OUR PARTY CONTACTS HAVE
CHARACTERIZED THE EXTRAORDINARY CONGRESS AS A
CONTINUATION OF "UNFINISHED BUSINESS" FROM LAST
DECEMBER'S FIVE-YEAR CONGRESS. MICHAEL MATAURE, A
FORMER ZANU-PF MP FROM MANICALAND, TOLD US THAT THE
SPECIAL CONGRESS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE HELD IN MARCH OR
APRIL, BUT BECAUSE OF THE REFERENDUM DEFEAT IN FEBRUARY,
IT WAS POSTPONED. MATAURE WENT SO FAR AS TO SAY THAT
MUGABE HAD BEEN READY TO DISCUSS FINDING A SUCCESSOR AT
THAT CONGRESS, BUT INSTEAD DUG IN HIS HEELS WHEN IT
BECAME APPARENT THAT THE PARTY WAS LOSING POPULAR
SUPPORT AND AND THE MEMBERSHIP WANTED HIM TO GO. NOW,
MUGABE IS UNLIKELY TO GIVE SERIOUS CONSIDERATION TO
ANOINTING A SUCCESSOR, BELIEVING THAT HE IS THE ONLY
FIGURE WHO CAN HOLD THE PARTY, AND THE COUNTRY,
TOGETHER, MATAURE OPINED.



3. SINCE THE PARTY'S BACKPEDALING ON MUGABE'S
"NOMINATION," A CHORUS OF POTENTIAL SUCCESSORS HAVE
CHIMED IN ON THEIR WILLINGNESS TO ASSUME THE REIGNS
SHOULD MUGABE DECLINE TO RUN AGAIN. THE 78-YEAR-OLD
VICE-PRESIDENT SIMON MUZENDA, WHO HAS BEEN OUT OF THE
LIMELIGHT FOR SOME TIME, IS MAKING IT KNOWN WITHIN PARTY
CIRCLES THAT HE WISHES TO SUCCEED MUGABE SHOULD HE
DECIDE TO RETIRE, ACCORDING TO THE "FINANCIAL GAZETTE."
OTHER PARTY STALWARTS ARE QUIETLY LOBBYING FOR
CONSIDERATION. IDEN WETHERELL, DEPUTY EDITOR OF THE
"ZIMBABWE INDEPENDENT," TOLD US THAT HE DOESN'T SEE
ANYONE IN THE PARTY WITH THE STATURE OR BACKING TO
CHALLENGE MUGABE FOR THE PRESIDENCY, OR EVEN FORM A
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 04 HARARE 05829 01 OF 03 131101Z
LASTING GOVERNMENT SHOULD MUGABE STEP DOWN. MOST OF THE
OLD GUARD ARE COMPLETELY BEHOLDEN TO THE PRESIDENT AND
LACK THE POLITICAL WHEREWITHAL NEEDED TO CONTROL THE
FRACTIOUS RULING PARTY. FURTHERMORE, THEY ARE
"CONTAMINATED" BY THEIR ASSOCIATION WITH MUGABE, MAKING
ANY ONE OF THEM UNPALATABLE TO THE PUBLIC. ONE-TIME
POTENTIAL SUCCESSORS SPEAKER OF PARLIAMENT EMMERSON
MNANGAGWA AND MINES AND ENERGY MINISTER SYDNEY
SEKERAMAYI ARE OUT OF THE RUNNING DUE TO THEIR ELECTORAL
SETBACKS, ACCORDING TO WETHERELL. FORMER AGRICULTURE
MINISTER KUMBIRAI KANGAI AND FORMER HOME AFFAIRS
MINISTER DUMISO DABENGWA ARE COMPLETELY WASHED UP
POLITICALLY, WETHERELL SAID. MASVINGO PARTY "SUPREMO"
EDDISON ZVOBGO FANCIES HIMSELF AS A PRESIDENTIAL
CANDIDATE, BUT HIS DECLINING HEALTH REMOVES HIM FROM
SERIOUS CONSIDERATION, WETHERELL STATED. HOME AFFAIRS
MINISTER AND PARTY CHAIRMAN JOHN NKOMO IS A PARTY HACK
WHO OBTAINED HIS POSITION ONLY BECAUSE OTHERS IN THE
PARTY DID NOT WANT TO SEE MNANGAGWA ASSUME THE ZANU-PF
CHAIRMANSHIP. FINANCE MINISTER SIMBA MAKONI, WHO IS
WIDELY TOUTED IN THE INDEPENDENT MEDIA AS A POSSIBLE
SUCCESSOR, LACKS THE CREDENTIALS AND POLITICAL SUPPORT
TO SUCCEED MUGABE, WETHERELL OFFERED.



4. (C) THERE IS A WIDENING SPLIT IN ZANU-PF BETWEEN THE

CONFIDENTIAL

CONFIDENTIAL PTQ7415

PAGE 01 HARARE 05829 02 OF 03 131101Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 AID-00 ACQ-00 CEA-01 CIAE-00 COME-00
CTME-00 DODE-00 DOTE-00 SRPP-00 DS-00 EB-00 EUR-00
EXIM-01 E-00 FAAE-00 VC-00 FRB-00 H-01 TEDE-00
INR-00 ITC-01 L-00 VCE-00 AC-01 NSAE-00 OMB-01
OPIC-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00 ACE-00 P-00 SP-00
IRM-00 SSO-00 STR-00 TRSE-00 USIE-00 PMB-00 DSCC-00
DRL-02 G-00 NFAT-00 SAS-00 /009W


--------------------------

913C9C 131101Z /38
P 131101Z OCT 00
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7356
INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 02 OF 03 HARARE 005829

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/13/10
TAGS: PGOV PREL ECON ZI ZANU PF
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE RULING PARTY IGNORING CLAMOR FOR
CHANGE AT ITS OWN PERIL

OLD GUARD (WITH LINKS TO THE LIBERATION WAR OF THE
1970S) AND THE SO-CALLED "YOUNG TURKS." WETHERELL DID
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 02 HARARE 05829 02 OF 03 131101Z
NOT DESCRIBE THE YOUNG TURKS AS A FACTION, BUT MORE AS A
DIVERSE GROUPING OF YOUNG BUSINESSMEN AND INTELLECTUALS
UNITED ONLY BY THEIR DESIRE TO KICK OUT THE OLD GUARD.
THEY DOMINATE THE ZANU-PF DELEGATION IN PARLIAMENT, AND
ARE LED BY CHEGUTU MP CHARLES NDLOVU, BUT HAVE NO
POSITIONS IN CABINET AND VERY FEW SENIOR POSITIONS IN
THE PARTY. NDLOVU, WHO IS ALSO THE PARTY CHAIRMAN FOR
MASHONALAND WEST, AND PADDY ZHANDA, PARTY CHAIRMAN FOR
MASHONALAND EAST, WOULD APPEAR TO BE THEIR MOST SENIOR
MEMBERS. MAKONI AND INDUSTRY AND INTERNATIONAL TRADE
MINISTER NKOSANA MOYO, OFTEN TOUTED AS REFORMERS, ARE
NOT "YOUNG TURKS," WETHERELL SAID, BUT MERELY COMPETENT
TECHNOCRATS BROUGHT IN TO PUT A GOOD FACE ON ECONOMIC
RECOVERY ATTEMPTS. MOYO IS NOT A MEMBER OF ZANU-PF, AND
RECENTLY TOLD THE AMBASSADOR HE WOULD CONTINUE TO GUARD
JEALOUSLY HIS POLITICAL INDEPENDENCE.



5. (C) MANY OF THE YOUNG TURKS ARE "JOHNNY-COME-
LATELYS" TO THE PARTY WHO SAW AN OPPORTUNITY TO GET INTO
GOVERNMENT BY TROUNCING UNPOPULAR PARTY HACKS IN THE
PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION, ACCORDING TO WETHERELL. SOME OF
THESE NEW MEMBERS HAVE ALREADY BEEN CO-OPTED BY THE OLD
GUARD. NONETHELESS, THE YOUNG TURKS ARE THE PRIMARY
SOURCE FOR CALLS TO REFORM THE PARTY'S TOP-DOWN
STRUCTURE. ZHANDA, A PROMINENT BUSINESSMAN IN
MASHONALAND EAST, TOLD US THAT HE WOULD RATHER TRY TO
CHANGE THE PARTY FROM WITHIN THAN FROM WITHOUT. HE SAID
HE HAS PERSONALLY TOLD MUGABE THAT CHANGE IS DESIRABLE
AND INEVITABLE. THE OCTOBER 6 "ZIMBABWE MIRROR"
REPORTED THAT SHORTLY AFTER THE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION,
JOHN NKOMO SET UP A CABINET-LEVEL TASK FORCE TO
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05829 02 OF 03 131101Z
RECOMMEND WAYS OF REVAMPING ZANU-PF. THE
PRESIDENTIALLY-APPOINTED POLITBURO, HOWEVER, DID NOT
FIND THE RECOMMENDATIONS, WHICH INCLUDED RENAMING THE
PARTY AND REFORMING ITS CONSTITUTION, AT ALL ACCEPTABLE.



6. (C) INSTEAD OF TAKING CALLS FOR CHANGE ON BOARD, THE
PARTY LEADERSHIP IS REDOUBLING ITS EFFORTS TO CLAMP DOWN
ON DISSENT BY TRYING TO REIMPOSE THE DISCIPLINE THAT HAS
SLIPPED AWAY IN THE LAST FEW YEARS. ONE OF MUGABE'S
PRINCIPAL INSTRUMENTS FOR THIS PURPOSE IS NEW MINISTER
OF STATE FOR INFORMATION AND PUBLICITY JONATHAN MOYO.
ACCORDING TO WETHERELL, MOYO WELL MIRRORS MUGABE'S
COMBATIVE STYLE AND CLOSELY REPRESENTS HIS THINKING ON
MOST ISSUES. MOYO IS RESENTED IN THE PARTY BECAUSE OF
HIS RAPID RISE AND BECAUSE HE SERVES AS THE PRESIDENT'S
POINT MAN ON THE CRITICAL ISSUES OF THE DAY. MUGABE
CIRCUMVENTS THE PARTY AND GOVERNMENT STRUCTURES BY
HAVING MOYO ISSUE STATEMENTS THAT EFFECTIVELY
COUNTERMAND DIRECTIVES FROM CABINET OFFICIALS, WETHERELL
CONTINUED. MOYO'S PERSONAL INVOLVEMENT IN THE CLOSING
DOWN OF THE INDEPENDENT CAPITAL RADIO STATION HIGHLIGHTS
HIS GROWING POWER. THE CABINET, AND THE MINISTRIES IT
REPRESENTS, IS BECOMING INCREASINGLY IRRELEVANT AS IT IS
SIDELINED BY THE PRESIDENT'S OFFICE. THIS IS BECOMING
ANOTHER SOURCE OF DISCORD WITHIN ZANU-PF.



7. (C) MOYO HAS BEEN INFORMALLY CHARGED WITH REIMPOSING
DISCIPLINE ON WAYWARD PARTY OFFICIALS IN THE PROVINCES
AS WELL. THE OCTOBER 7 GOVERNMENT-CONTROLLED "HERALD"
PROMINENTLY REPORTED THAT THE ENTIRE ZANU-PF PROVINCIAL
EXECUTIVE IN HARARE HAD BEEN SUSPENDED OVER INFIGHTING
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 04 HARARE 05829 02 OF 03 131101Z
AMONG ITS MEMBERS. CENTRAL COMMITTEE MEMBERS THEN TOOK
OVER THE OPERATION OF THE RULING PARTY IN HARARE. THE
ZANU-PF EXECUTIVE LED BY SHADRECK BETA IN MANICALAND WAS
SUSPENDED SHORTLY THEREAFTER. MANICALAND HAS BEEN
RACKED BY INTRA-PARTY SQUABBLING AND FEUDING FOR SEVERAL
YEARS. THE PARTY CHAIRS IN MASVINGO, MASHONALAND WEST,
AND MIDLANDS ARE ALSO REPORTED TO BE HEADING FOR THE
CHOPPING BLOCK. MUGABE RECENTLY WARNED OF CLEANING OUT
"DARK CHARACTERS" FROM THE PARTY WHO WERE MORE
INTERESTED IN "MAKING WAR" ON THEIR FELLOW PARTY MEMBERS
THAN "ENGAGING OUR POLITICAL RIVALS." THE SUSPENSIONS
WILL LIKELY SERVE AS A PUNISHMENT FOR THOSE LOCAL PARTY
OFFICIALS WHO ALLOWED THE MDC TO WIN SO MANY SEATS IN
THE JUNE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION.



8. (C) THE OCTOBER 13 EDITION OF "THE HERALD" REPORTED
THAT MUGABE IS THINKING OF TURNING OVER THE PRESIDENCY
TO A SUCCESSOR, BUT NOT WHEN THE PARTY IS "IN
DIFFICULTY," AND ONLY AFTER IT "WINS VICTORY" AND
ENSURES THAT THE COUNTRY'S "INDEPENDENCE IS NOT IN THE
HANDS OF STOOGES AND AGENTS OF IMPERIALISTS" - A CLEAR
REFERENCE TO THE MDC. MUGABE'S COMMENTS IN A BBC
INTERVIEW, AND THEIR SUBSEQUENT PROMINENT COVERAGE IN
THE "HERALD," WERE LIKELY INTENDED TO ASSUAGE THE
RESTIVE PARTY MASSES AHEAD OF THIS YEAR'S PARTY

CONFIDENTIAL

CONFIDENTIAL PTQ7416

PAGE 01 HARARE 05829 03 OF 03 131101Z
ACTION AF-00

INFO LOG-00 NP-00 AID-00 ACQ-00 CEA-01 CIAE-00 COME-00
CTME-00 DODE-00 DOTE-00 SRPP-00 DS-00 EB-00 EUR-00
EXIM-01 E-00 FAAE-00 VC-00 FRB-00 H-01 TEDE-00
INR-00 ITC-01 L-00 VCE-00 AC-01 NSAE-00 OMB-01
OPIC-01 PA-00 PM-00 PRS-00 ACE-00 P-00 SP-00
IRM-00 SSO-00 STR-00 TRSE-00 USIE-00 PMB-00 DSCC-00
DRL-02 G-00 NFAT-00 SAS-00 /009W


--------------------------

913C9F 131101Z /38
P 131101Z OCT 00
FM AMEMBASSY HARARE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7357
INFO NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 03 OF 03 HARARE 005829

SIPDIS

NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR GAYLE SMITH
LONDON FOR CHARLES GURNEY
PARIS FOR BISA WILLIAMS

E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/13/10
TAGS: PGOV PREL ECON ZI ZANU PF
SUBJECT: ZIMBABWE RULING PARTY IGNORING CLAMOR FOR
CHANGE AT ITS OWN PERIL

CONGRESS. THE REMARKS PROVIDE MUGABE WITH AN EXCUSE TO
STAY AT THE PARTY'S HELM. AS WETHERELL CHARACTERIZED
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PAGE 02 HARARE 05829 03 OF 03 131101Z
IT, MUGABE IS TRYING TO PROJECT AN IMAGE OF AN EMBATTLED
LEADER UNDER SIEGE FROM FOREIGN "IMPERIALISTS" (BRITAIN
AND THE U.S.) AND "COUNTERREVOLUTIONARIES" WITHIN THE
COUNTRY (MDC MEMBERS AND WHITES). CREATING ENEMIES
OUTSIDE THE PARTY IS THE ONLY WAY HE BELIEVES HE CAN
KEEP A LID ON THE GROWING DISCONTENT WITHIN THE PARTY
AND THE COUNTRY.



9. (C) COMMENT: PRESIDENT MUGABE AND HIS LOYAL OLD
GUARD APPEAR TO BE POSITIONING THEMSELVES TO WARD OFF
ANY CHALLENGES TO THEIR ENTRENCHED LEADERSHIP AT THIS
YEAR'S PARTY CONGRESS. AT LAST YEAR'S CONGRESS, MUGABE
AND COMPANY SUCCESSFULLY SWEPT UNDER THE RUG THE YOUNG
TURKS' CALLS FOR REFORMING THE PARTY, AND THIS YEAR IS
NOT LIKELY TO BE ANY DIFFERENT. MUGABE HAS SHOWN NO
WILLINGNESS TO COMPROMISE WITH ANYONE WHO ESPOUSES
ALTERNATIVE VIEWPOINTS. HE REMAINS FIRMLY IN CONTROL OF
THE POLITBURO, THE PARTY'S PRIMARY DECISION-MAKING BODY.
UNLIKE MUGABE'S EARLY YEARS IN WHICH HE RULED MORE BY
CONSENSUS, HE IS NOW MORE FREQUENTLY RULING BY DECREE ON
CRITICAL ISSUES SUCH AS LAND REFORM, AND IN THE PROCESS
SIDELINING PARLIAMENT, HIS CABINET, AND HIS OWN PARTY.
THE QUESTION REMAINS HOW LONG THE PARTY FAITHFUL ARE
WILLING TO WAIT FOR CHANGE FROM THE TOP BEFORE THEY
REVOLT AND KICK MUGABE OUT. THIS YEAR'S CONGRESS IS
PROBABLY THE LAST OPPORTUNITY FOR ZANU-PF TO BEGIN
MANAGING A SMOOTH CHANGEOVER BEFORE THE MAY 2002
PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION. THE PARTY NEEDS ALL THE TIME IT
CAN GET TO CHANGE ITS IMAGE OF AN OUTDATED AND
FOSSILIZED ORGANIZATION THAT NO LONGER HAS THE INTERESTS
OF THE PEOPLE AT HEART. IF THE SUCCESSION ISSUE IS ONCE
CONFIDENTIAL

PAGE 03 HARARE 05829 03 OF 03 131101Z
AGAIN SWEPT UNDER THE RUG THIS YEAR, OR MUGABE REAFFIRMS
HE WILL AGAIN STAND FOR PRESIDENT, EVEN THE PARTY
FAITHFUL MAY DECIDE THEY HAVE A BETTER CHANCE OF STAYING
IN GOVERNMENT BY JOINING THE OPPOSITION. IF HE DOES NOT
ALLOW SOME CHANGE TO COME NOW, MUGABE RISKS A MORE
SUDDEN, AND FOR HIM, UNDESIRABLE, CHANGE DOWN THE ROAD.
END COMMENT.

IRVING

CONFIDENTIAL

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