G40 kingpin Jonathan Moyo struggling to shake-off Zanu PF roots

Moyo Jonathan

Struggling for trust, the embattled fugitive former ZANU PF politburo member Jonathan Moyo, says he will never rejoin the ruling party as he believes it to be Zimbabwe’s number one existential threat. Writing on Twitter on Monday, Moyo said:

This is an emphatic message that it’s finally over. There’s no going back. It’s time to move on. ZanuPF is Zimbabwe’s number [one] existential threat. Association with it is toxic, by definition!

I kept hoping that ZanuPF was reformable until the 15 November military coup that gave me a rude awakening!

Moyo fled from Zimbabwe during the military coup that overthrew the late former President Robert Mugabe in November 2017.

He has been living in exile in an East African country ever since he fled from Zimbabwe.

Sources said, Moyo is desperate to get his name removed from Western sanctions so that he will sneak into the US.

Meanwhile, senior members of the main opposition led by Nelson Chamisa have always said Moyo it devious and he would never be allowed into party structures.

Moyo has lashed at Chinese Deputy Ambassador Zhao Baogang after the latter said of Moyo, “In the past decades he changed colors many time just for power, he is power thirsty and his words never believable.”

Following are key figures in the former Zimbabwe First Lady Grace Mugabe’s ‘G40’ political faction, the target of an overnight 2017 coup by the military.

GRACE MUGABE – Mugabe’s 52-year-old wife rose from political obscurity to the top ranks of the ruling ZANU-PF party and, after the purge a week ago of Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa, became the front-runner to succeed her husband.

JONATHAN MOYO – A slick propagandist and former information minister, Moyo was G40’s brains and mouthpiece who never shied away from an acerbic comment or Tweet about his rivals. His Twitter feed has been uncharacteristically silent since the coup.

Moyo and his close ally Albert Ngulube, a senior CIO in the office of president Robert Mugabe as Central Intelligence Organisation (CIO) director of security, ran the abduction team of opposition supporters in the aborted Presidential run-off in 2008.

SAVIOUR KASUKUWERE – A bruising former ZANU-PF Youth minister nicknamed “Tyson”, Kasukuwere ran Mugabe’s attempts to “indigenise” the economy, essentially forcing foreign investors to surrender large stakes in their businesses to locals.

IGNATIUS CHOMBO – A former University lecturer and Mugabe’s homeboy.

AUGUSTINE CHIHURI – The former Police Commissioner General of the police, Chihuri was accused by rights groups of presiding over vicious crackdowns on dissent and popular protest in the last 18 months.

KUDZAI CHIPANGA – The 35-year-old youth leader ingratiated himself to Mugabe and Grace and organised nationwide youth rallies that Grace Mugabe used to attack Mnangagwa and his allies.

Moyo’s Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act, passed in 2002, was used to shut down the country’s only independent daily newspaper, The Daily News. The laws also were used to jail independent Zimbabwean journalists and expel or bar foreign journalists.

Moyo also shut down two independent radio stations.

Moyo controlled the government’s television and radio broadcaster. He cancelled its contracts for news supplied by the British Broadcasting Corporation and the United States CNN network.

He fired several broadcast presenters and largely banished Western music and movies from the airwaves. An amateur musician, he ordered the broadcaster to run jingles he composed and revolutionary songs praising the often-violent seizures of thousands of white-owned farms.

Human rights groups and the independent Mass Media Monitoring Project of Zimbabwe said much of the propaganda broadcast on Moyo’s orders and carried in the state press incited hatred and prejudice against government critics, the main opposition party, the 30 000-member white community and other minorities in the nation’s population of 12,5-million.

Military explosives were used. There have been no arrests in that attack. Reporters at state newspapers said Moyo frequently personally supervised the selection of material for publication and wrote outspoken pro-government columns himself or assigned loyalists to write them.

As minister, he arranged virtually round-the-clock monitoring of the internet and satellite television to amass files on journalists reporting on the country for foreign media.

Before joining the government, Moyo taught at the main University of Zimbabwe in Harare in the 1980s. Then, he contributed highly critical articles to independent newspapers and magazines, accusing Mugabe’s party of being authoritarian, outdated in its avowed Marxist policies and misguided in its alliances with China, the Soviet Union and bankrupt East bloc nations.

But he joined the government in 2000 as the chief spokesperson for the state-appointed Constitutional Commission ahead of a referendum on constitutional reforms that would have entrenched Mugabe’s powers. In Mugabe’s biggest polling defeat since he led the nation to independence in 1980, referendum voters rejected the reforms.

Moyo, however, made himself a fiery and sometimes eloquent defender of Mugabe and his policies and was appointed Information Minister a few months later.