Harare - President Robert Mugabe’s quarrelling Zanu-PF party has split, with a new faction emerging.
The new party, still to be registered or publicly announced, will also be called Zanu-PF, but the PF will, apparently stand for People First, instead of Patriotic Front.
The Daily News in Harare said it had well-placed sources claiming that sacked vice-president Joice Mujuru, who was expelled from Mugabe’s Zanu-PF last week, would lead the new party.
Others who will be part of it include Zanu-PF’s former spokesman Rugare Gumbo, former presidential affairs minister Didymus Mutasa and other top party members, some of whom were sacked from their cabinet jobs last year because they supported Mujuru. None of them answered their cellphones yesterday.
The party began public infighting last year before the Zanu-PF congress, between Mujuru supporters and those of Justice Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa as one of two party vice-presidents.
The public attack against Mujuru was led by first lady Grace Mugabe, who is on Zanu-PF’s politburo.
Mnangagwa openly detested Mujuru and her powerful late husband Solomon, especially after he arranged for his wife to leapfrog Mnangagwa into the vice-presidency in 2004.
It is not clear how many MPs and senators, elected on a Zanu-PF ticket in 2013, will stay with Mugabe or leave to join Mujuru.
Mugabe was due to arrive in South Africa on Tuesday on a state visit.