Mnangagwa likely to drop old ministers in new cabinet - report

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa is reportedly set to dump old ministers at the ruling Zanu-PF party’s headquarters, amid growing pressure to appoint his new cabinet after taking office last month.

According to the privately-owned Daily News, the ruling party was set to adopt a modus operandi that would give it more powers than the government.

The planned model was likely to be similar to that of the ANC and the Chinese Communist Party.

Unnamed sources confirmed the development, adding that the president was going to "reassign many bigwigs" to the party’s headquarters, in a bid to strengthen and breathe new life into government, the report said.

"The changes are coming. What we are going to have is a situation whereby the old guard will go to the party and enjoy same perks as ministers.

"What we are saying is that the party is supreme to the government and the party must therefore have the power to recall some of the ministers from government," an unnamed source was quoted as saying.

The party’s legal affairs chief, Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, said the move would effectively make the ruling party bigger than government.

Indications were that Mnangagwa was now racing against time, as reports suggested that government was "virtually at a standstill".

According to NewsDay, Mnangagwa recently met the outgoing parliamentary speaker Jacob Mudenda to discuss the processes and procedures to take place, as the country awaited the appointment of cabinet ministers.

Speaking to News24, Piers Pigou from the International Crisis Group said that Mnangagwa's new cabinet should be able to deliver on his "change promises".

Pigou said that the president needed technocrats who possessed the necessary skills to bring about change.

"He [Mnangagwa] needs technocrats - people who have the necessary skills. He would need people who can deliver. He did not mention the opposition in his inauguration speech, so I think he would not necessary pull people from that pool. He might, however, pull people from the other sectors, including civil society and from civil services."

Mnangagwa himself in May hinted that he would wield the axe on underperforming ministers soon after the watershed polls.

According to the state-owned Herald newspaper, the president said that he planned on reforming the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC), and would not tolerate any form of corruption, as it was no longer "business as usually" in his administration.

* Sign up to News24's top Africa news in your inbox: SUBSCRIBE TO THE HELLO AFRICA NEWSLETTER

FOLLOW News24 Africa on Twitter and Facebook