Embattled Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) leader, Joice Mujuru, has accused a group of party elders she expelled last week of seeking to turn her into a sex slave, after proposing that she be the opposition party’s “queen bee”.
In an audio recording of her address to provincial structures in Masvingo at the weekend, Mujuru accused her former close allies, notably Didymus Mutasa and Rugare Gumbo, of wanting her to sleep with male colleagues in the party, taking advantage of the fact that she was a widow.
“I want you to Google then advise each other. They said Mai Mujuru, we want you to be our queen bee. I was supposed to mate with all the men in the party. I was supposed to be their wife,” she said.
“I was supposed to work for them because they had seen that while I was still in Egypt (Zanu-PF) I used to work hard.
“So they wanted to borrow that hard-working spirit to work for them and I told them that I can’t be your queen bee.
I am a woman of substance even though I am a widow, I have an image to protect and since the death of my husband (Solomon Mujuru), I have no appetite for men. I told them that I am here to work for Zimbabwe and this did not make them happy.”
But, Gumbo yesterday hit back at Mujuru, accusing her of having a shallow understanding of political dichotomy and processes.
“She does not have an understanding of a beehive,” he shot back.
“We indeed said she was supposed to be the queen bee. Not that we wanted to sleep with her, but we were supposed to do all the dirty work, fight for her, protect her and not expose her because we understood her limitations.
“We knew if she was exposed, she would make mistakes like she has been making after being exposed. Now, how can you have a leader, who does not understand such simple things?”
A queen bee is the fertile egg-laying matriarch in a beehive.
Mujuru went further, accusing Gumbo and Mutasa of wanting to use ZimPF as a money-spinning venture for their personal gain.
“The people were planning to oust me for a very long time. I have not refused to vacate my post, but why do they want me to vacate the seat?” she queried.
“When I was asked to lead People First (PF), I said-PF was not started so that people can treat it as a business.
“That is when I started (clashing)with the two gentlemen, namely Rugare Gumbo and Didymus Mutasa. They wanted the party to be a money-spinning machine for their personal needs. That’s why you heard people saying there was a fund bringing money from Britain to the party.”
Mujuru said there was no single meeting that the party held that Gumbo and Mutasa would not demand vehicles, money and fuel.”I told them that we once were all ministers and, I think, we have some savings from that, let’s build the party first. We can’t start wanting money because we will be cheating ourselves,” she said.
Mujuru claimed that there was a clandestine plan to unseat her from power after using her to build ZimPF.
“Our constitution says we are not going to hero-worship anyone and on our apparels we are not going to put anyone’s face,” she said.
“I was begged to put my face because people said we can’t sell the party if people don’t know who is the leader, you are the brand that people are coming for at-PF, so are your picture and the party name.
“Their plan was to say after I have worked and there is no clear leader in the party, they would then step in and take over the reins as they were now trying to do.”
The former Vice-President added: “They are now saying they don’t want to be led by a woman. Male chauvinism is bad. Let’s work together because we have been fighting for equal opportunities wherever they are. We were fighting for equal opportunities.
“Each time, they would say the party is ours, we started the party. We know they started it and they are supposed to be respected, but if you are demanding, every day, to be respected, I start to question and think maybe you are barren.”
Gumbo dismissed the allegations as lies, saying Mujuru should come clean on the source of funding for her livelihood, saying she was heavily funded by President Robert Mugabe’s government.
“She is the one who has cars and she receives fuel from Mugabe, her cars are serviced by government and she gets money from there, she is the one who wants money. I have never been one for that, I drive a Honda Fit and I like it simple,” he said.
Mutasa was not reached for comment.
Meanwhile, Gumbo and his group yesterday said they would today announce their new political plans following their nasty fallout with Mujuru last week.
He dismissed Mujuru’s move to visit various provinces to consolidate her power base, saying it would come to nothing, as she was meeting people who were not in ZimPF structures.
“We don’t believe in going around the provinces meeting vendors and so on, as if that is what can change the Zimbabwean situation,” he said.
“Those people she is meeting are not bona fide members. These are just ordinary people, who are keen to see what Mujuru looks like.
“This is what we were critical of. Instead of spending time building structures of the party speaking about your ideology and what can be done to win people’s confidence, she chooses to spend time wondering about doing useless rallies. We don’t believe in that.”
Already, Mujuru has visited Masvingo, Bulawayo, Matabeleland North and South and Mashonaland Central provinces.
Tomorrow, she will be in Manicaland.