FORMER vice president Joice Mujuru on Thursday said she would fight her expulsion from the ruling Zanu-PF party after falling out with President Robert Mugabe.

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Mujuru, who was previously tipped as Mugabe’s likely successor, was expelled last week by Zanu PF for allegedly plotting against the 91-year-old president.

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“I am one who can never be expelled from the original and genuine Zanu PF,” Mujuru said in her first public reaction to her dismissal.

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She said in a statement that the Zanu PF’s decision to expel her was based on an “unsubstantiated, malicious and hateful campaign”.

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Mujuru fell out with Mugabe last year and was sacked as vice-president in December.

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Many of her allies in government were also fired and expelled from Zanu PF after Mugabe accused her of plotting to oust him.

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Joice Mujuru is a former guerrilla fighter from the liberation war in the former Rhodesia and the widow of army commander Solomon Mujuru, who died in a mysterious house fire in 2011.

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After holding cabinet posts in every government since independence in 1980, Mujuru came under bitter verbal attack from Mugabe’s wife Grace, who has been promoted to head Zanu PF’s women’s wing.

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Mugabe replaced Mujuru as vice-president with his justice minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, a hardliner in the regime.

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Mugabe and his wife on Thursday completed a two-day state visit to neighbouring South Africa seeking foreign investment to revive his nation’s moribund economy. – Agencies