Mutambara demotion round up

HARARE - Deputy Prime Minister Arthur Mutambara has been demoted by the powerful 24-member MDC Standing Committee, which has assigned Professor Welshman Ncube to take up his post as the new Deputy Prime Minister.

Mutambara has been deployed to the ministry of Regional Intergration and International Cooperation, previously held by the new secretary general Priscilla Misihairabwi Mushonga, who replaces Ncube as minister of Industry and Commerce. Announcing the reshuffle after a marathon Standing Committee meeting held at the Holiday Inn in Harare Sunday, Ncube said his party has also recalled him from the Joint Monitoring and Implementation Committee, JOMIC, and from COPAC, where he was co chair to concentrate on his new post as Deputy Prime Minister.

“Prof Mutambara will be redeployed to the ministry of Regional Intergration and International Cooperation. I will be

deployed to the office of the deputy Prime Minister,” Ncube told the news conference Sunday. “Those are the decisions of the Standing Committee which have been communicated to the persons who are concerned and affected. As you know the prerogative of the Standing Committee is to deploy people as it has always done in the past. So that’s basically what we have done in today’s meeting.”

Ncube declined to say how Mutambara had received the latest plan, but authoritative party sources said he was taking it very hard and that the robotics professor was apoplectic with fury. Mutambara was not immediately available for comment. But Ncube said: “Yes we have informed Prof Mutambara on the decision of the Standing Commitee. We

hope that he, together with all the affected persons, will accept that position. He has been informed.

If you want further comment you can contact him. But we have done our part as a party in informing him.” Asked how Mutambara had reacted, Ncube retorted: “We didn’t have to take any reaction.” Asked if Mutambara accepted the demotion to the new position, Ncube said: “You have to ask him that question. The party deployed people and all loyal cadres get told by the party what assignment they have been given.” Ncube clarified that he was not yet DPM of Zimbabwe.

“You become the Deputy Prime Minister when you are properly sworn in into that position. All we are saying is that those

are the deployments that the party has made. Obviously we have to follow the adminstrative procedures to ensure that those decision are implemented. Needless to say the President is the one who does all the adminstrative procedures. We will of course inform his office in due course.”

Ncube declined to say whet he would do when “Mugabe performed a Bennett” on him. Mugabe has refused to accept the MDC T deployee Roy Bennett as deputy Agriculture minister. Ncube said: “We will have to wait until we cross that bridge.”

Ncube told the news conference that the Standing Committee was the first executive meeting after congress, and it naturally reviewed the persons that the party deployed two years ago to government. “The standing committee decided that we will redeploy our government team as follows: first the deputy ministers will remain as they are with Makula remaining the deputy minister for Foreign Affairs with Tapela remaining the deputy minister of Higher Education and the deputy secretary general Moses Mzila-Ndlovu will remain deployed as minister of State in the Organ on National Healing and Reconciliation.”

President Mugabe in December adminstered the oath of office on the former deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mzila-Ndlovu, as a Minister of National Healing and Reconciliation to replace the late MDC Vice President Gibson Sibanda, and also swore into office Rabson Robert Makula, to replace Mzila-Ndlovu as the new Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.

“Minister Mushonga will be redeployed to the ministry of Industry and Commerce,” Ncube said, adding David Coltart stays as Education minister.

“He has done a very good job there there will be absolutely no reason for him to be reassigned. So he remains as Education minister.” Ncube announced further changes in deployees to other quasi-government functions: “Some of the decisions that we took are the following: as you know myself as the President, I also in my capacity as secretary

general represented the party as one of the co-chairpersons at JOMIC.

The standing committee has decided that we should reassign that function to someone else and therefore Qubani Moyo, the national organising secretary will go to JOMIC as a member of JOMIC,” Ncube told reporters.

“The secretary general, minister Mushonga will become the co-chairperson at JOMIC. Then at COPAC, in the management committee of COPAC where I was one of the three co-chairpersons of COPAC, again the Standing Committee decided that I should be recalled, to use your term, from COPAC back to the party and that in my place Moses Mzila Ndlovu the deputy secretary general should be deployed in my position at COPAC and that again the secretary general who is already a member will take over and be one of the co-chairpersons at COPAC.”

Reacting to the legal challenge to the congess that installed him as party president, Ncube, a professor of law, said his party was glad the 13 individuals have decidede to petition the High Court “over what they think are anomalies” in the manner in which the June 8 congress was called.

“It was decided that we will vigorously oppose that application and indeed that we are happy that they have decided to make this a legal case rather than a political case because as a legal case it is very easy to resolve and we know we are on firm ground,” Ncube said. “We hope there will be decision soon which shows that everything around congress was done scrupulously in accordnace with the Constitution of the party and that that Constitution was followed.”

Post published in: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *