Zimbabwe November 2018


Zimbabwe Monthly Briefing November 2018



Zimbabwe 21 November 2018

Former presidential adviser Chris Mutsvangwa accuses vice president Constantino Chiwenga of victimisation and plotting his removal as chairperson of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA) after he criticised Chiwenga’s business ally.


Divisions in Zanu-PF deepen as Mnangagwa’s former adviser cries foul

President Emmerson Mnangagwa's (2017-present) former adviser, Chris Mutsvangwa, accused vice president General Constantino Chiwenga on 16 November of orchestrating his removal as the chairman of the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association (ZNLWVA).1 The accusation is the latest twist in internal tensions within the ruling coalition that may contribute to political instability in Zimbabwe.2 Mutsvangwa issued statements in October claiming that local businessman Kudakwashe Tagwirei, who has close ties with Chiwenga, was causing divisions within the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF) party.3 Mutsvangwa also held Tagwirei responsible for corrupt activities that account for the continuing economic decay in Zimbabwe.4

The ZNLWVA, which consistently backed Mnangagwa’s political ambitions before the coup in November 2017, issued a statement on 12 November saying that it had resolved to recall Mutsvangwa from the association’s leadership on allegations of sowing political divisions in the ruling coalition.5 Mutsvangwa also alleges that Chiwenga has been working with the defence and war veterans deputy minister, Victor Matemadanda.6

“They said they want to anoint him as the leader of war veterans because he is the only war veteran in a leadership position who won a parliamentary seat in the 30 July elections... Matemadanda has been trying to change the leadership, but he is meeting a lot of resistance from everybody… other provinces are saying this is nonsense, [except Mashonaland East]… We exposed the cartel and it does not have political cover at the moment. They are desperate for political protection and this has been worsened by the fact that President Mnangagwa won the elections in July… they are not happy. To continue with that cartel you need to have Number 1 supporting it, but he is not.”7

Matemadanda has denied claims that he is working with Chiwenga to remove Mutsvangwa from office: 8

“I have always defended Mutsvangwa, but I was surprised one day when his wife accused me of trying to usurp the chairmanship from Mutsvangwa as if there is a seat specifically reserved for a specific person to the chairman. I cannot fight Mutsvangwa today when I was fired by [former president Robert] Mugabe [1980-2017] for defending Mutsvangwa…”9

The conflict between Mutsvangwa and Matemadanda reflects the ongoing tensions between supporters of President Mnangagwa on one hand, and vice president Chiwenga on the other.10 Mnangagwa and Chiwenga lead competing centres of power within the ruling coalition that includes Zanu-PF, the army and security services, business people, and the war veterans association.11 The ongoing factional tensions are likely to escalate towards the next general election in 2023, especially if Chiwenga decides to run for office against Mnangagwa.12 Should this happen, it is likely that the military will be involved in the political transition in the form of another coup or manipulated election results.13


9 Dec 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe) Customer Experience and Service Delivery Symposium;

23 Apr 2019 Bulawayo (Zimbabwe) Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) Business Days;

12 Jun 2019 Harare (Zimbabwe) Sign Africa Expo;

June 2023 (Zimbabwe) General elections;

24-25 Sep 2018 (Nigeria) Central Bank of Nigeria Monetary Policy Committee meeting


21 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)Daily News. Industry deputy minister Raji Modi reveals that Zimbabwe’s trade with China has reached $1 billion;

21 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)Bulawayo24. India-based company Varun Beverages announces plans for increased production at its recently launched $40m manufacturing and bottling plant in Harare;

19 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)TimesLive. The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) targets wealthy Zimbabweans with lifestyle audits and arrests;

17 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)Vanguard. President Emmerson Mnangagwa calls for a review of Zimbabwe’s traffic laws amidst successive fatal road accidents;

13 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)News24. The Zimbabwe Defence Forces (ZDF) deny that soldiers shot and killed six protesters on 1 August as the commission of inquiry on post-election violence continues;

13 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)IOL. Zimbabwe Statistics (ZimStats) reveals that inflation rose to 21% in October;

6 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)IOL. The Zimbabwe Republic Police arrests former information, communication, technology, postal and courier services minister Supa Mandiwanzira on allegations of abuse of office;

2 Nov 2018 Perth (Australia)Voice of America. Australia-based Invictus Energy downplays President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s announcement that Zimbabwe has confirmed commercial deposits of oil;

1 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe) Africa News. President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended the tenure of Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) governor John Mangudya, which was set to expire this year, by another four years;

1 Nov 2018 Harare (Zimbabwe)BBC. President Emmerson Mnangagwa announces that Australia-based oil and gas exploration company Invictus Energy has discovered oil in Muzarabani district;

31 Oct 2018 Washington (United States)World Bank. Zimbabwe improves four places to 155 out of 190 countries in the World Bank's 2019 Doing Business rankings;

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1. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

2. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

3. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

4. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

5. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

6. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

7. [Former presidential advisor, Chris Mutsvangwa quoted in The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

8. [The Standard, 18 Nov 2018.]

9. [Defence and war veterans deputy minister, Victor Matemadanda quoted in The Standard, 12 Nov 2018.]

10. [Source, analyst, London]

11. [Source, analyst, London]

12. [Source, analyst, London]

13. [Source, analyst, London]