In an interview with The Standard’s senior reporter Veneranda Langa (VL), President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s spokesperson George Charamba (GC) said reports that Vice President Constantino Chiwenga was dying were meant to destabilise the presidium.
When asked if he was removed from his post as Information Ministry permanent secretary because of his allegiance to Chiwenga, Charamba accused the media of creating conflict between Chiwenga and Mnangagwa. Below is the excerpt of the interview:
VL: What is your reaction to allegations that your removal from the position of permanent secretary had to do with your allegiance to Chiwenga and your use of state controlled media to prop him up?
GC: You (media) invented that conflict, and I live close to those characters and then you make allegations. If only you knew the degree of interaction between the two (Mnangagwa and Chiwenga). If you knew no one would pick a pen and put that line, actually vakapfekana (they are tight buddies).
It is the same with Mohadi, each time we are together there is laughter through and through. That is the convivial environment that characterises the presidency, but there are certain groups in society which feel threatened by the harmony in the presidency and want conflict, but no such conflict exists and will ever exist.
Recently there were unusual developments where Amai Chiwenga gave up her organisation Musha Mukadzi so that the first lady (Auxillia Mnangagwa) can run it as Angel of Hope – but that is the spirit.
There is only one first lady and everyone rallies around that. When the White City tragedy struck, Zanu PF went to elections without the national chairperson Oppah Muchinguri because she was badly injured.
VPs Mohadi and Chiwenga also suffered injuries, and luckily the two (Mnangagwa and Chiwenga were able to work together and pulled the whole machinery of campaigning.
Can you imagine if the bombing was on the opposition, the elections were going to be stopped. So, there is camaradie spirit existing within the Presidency.
I have noticed two divisive strategies pursued by people opposed to the current leadership.
The first is to allege conflict and invent it. The second is to invent illness – that VP Chiwenga is dying and bed ridden, and given my state in government I can relate to them because those are techniques to destabilise an outfit, except that we have three trained soldiers, two intelligence ministers, and one is commander in the presidency – and how do you divide them.
Mohadi is a CIO, Mnangagwa was a long time intelligence minister, Chiwenga rose from the liberation war to the rank of general and then commander, and how do you use run of the mill techniques to divide people with vast experience?
That is an exercise in futility.