ZIMBABWE President Robert Mugabe on Thursday said he together with all the members of the Zanu PF politburo and central committee will have to resign their posts to allow for election of new blood at the party’s elective congress in December.
Mugabe, who is Zanu PF president and first secretary, made the remarks at the official opening of the Women’s League conference in Harare.
“You are meeting in preparation for the national people’s congress at the end of the year and at that congress, all the leaders of the party at the central committee and politburo level must resign.
All of us must resign so new ones can be chosen and I am sure you are aware of that,” he said. Mugabe denounced party leaders involved in vote-buying and intimidation ahead of the congress.
“They are some who are playing dirty, wanting to have candidates favourable to them. Beware of that,” Mugabe told thousands of women and leaders at the meeting.
Mugabe said there should be no fighting within Zanu PF, adding that the main fight should be to ensure the party’s economic blueprint, ZimAsset, was implemented to turn around the country’s economic fortunes.
“I hope preparations for this conference do show better preparation than was the case with the preceding one, that for the Youth League,” Mugabe said.
“I want once again to apologise for our behaviour. There were many blunders in preparing for the Youth League conference and very many, some of them even criminal blunders, in interfering with the rights of members of the Youth League to have their own choice of who they preferred and to elect their own candidates for only two positions.”
He added: “I want to repeat this and say, please forgive us the party leaders for our blunders. We didn’t plan well the Youth League conference. We encountered a lot of things that we didn’t handle well, but the most blunders were the embarrassing way we interfered with the process.”
He said it was sad that senior officials in the politburo fought hard to influence the outcome of the Youth League elections in an embarrassing manner which should not be repeated in the Women’s League.
“We didn’t have money for food and money to pay for lorries and buses, but we got money to buy people. I plead with women that you should have respect for your standing. We don’t want to interfere like we did with youths in your affairs. If already it has been done, don’t do what you don’t want to do, what you are forced to do.”