US ambassador conceded that Jonathan Moyo is a shrewd analyst

Former United States ambassador to Zimbabwe Christopher Dell, who was allegedly at the centre of his government’s push to remove President Robert Mugabe, conceded that although his former confidante Jonathan Moyo was now an opponent of Mugabe and his views about the president should be read in that light he was also a shrewd analyst.

“He maintains good contacts within the GOZ (Government of Zimbabwe) and ruling party, and his renditions of events have proved accurate in the past,” Dell said in a diplomatic cable that has just been released by Wikileaks.

“As he acknowledges, predictions are just that, but his opinions are certainly worthy of consideration as he retains excellent contacts within the senior ranks of ZANU-PF,” Dell says in a cable dispatched on 24 May 2007.

Moyo had told US officials that although there had been several wrong predictions about the end of Mugabe’s rule there was a historic convergence of events that made the case for Mugabe’s exit in the near term:

  • Mugabe was rebuffed in his efforts to extend his term until 2010*the kind of rebuke that had never occurred before;
  • the disputes within ZANU-PF have become public, evidencing Mugabe's inability to maintain party solidarity;
  • Mugabe is 83 years old and incapable of maintaining his legendary control on the party and individuals around him;
  • and inflation is spiralling out of control, the economy is crashing, and the GOZ and Mugabe have no plan for economic recovery.

He said there were strategic discussions for an outside candidate such as Gideon Gono, Strive Masiyiwa, or Simba Makoni.

 

Full cable:

 

Viewing cable 07HARARE463, JONATHAN MOYO ON ZANU-PF TURMOIL

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Reference ID

Created

Released

Classification

Origin

07HARARE463

2007-05-24 15:05

2011-08-30 01:44

CONFIDENTIAL

Embassy Harare

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R 241505Z MAY 07

FM AMEMBASSY HARARE

TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1523

INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AFRICAN DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY

RUEHUJA/AMEMBASSY ABUJA 1608

RUEHAR/AMEMBASSY ACCRA 1475

RUEHDS/AMEMBASSY ADDIS ABABA 1612

RUEHRL/AMEMBASSY BERLIN 0273

RUEHBY/AMEMBASSY CANBERRA 0877

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RUEHKM/AMEMBASSY KAMPALA 1668

RUEHNR/AMEMBASSY NAIROBI 4074

RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 1437

RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 2095

RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0735

RHMFISS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC

RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE

RUFOADA/JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK

RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC

RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC

RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS

RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 1829

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 HARARE 000463

 

SIPDIS

 

SIPDIS

 

AF/S FOR S.HILL

ADDIS ABABA FOR USAU

ADDIS ABABA FOR ACSS

STATE PASS TO USAID FOR E.LOKEN

STATE PASS TO NSC FOR SENIOR AFRICA DIRECTOR B.PITTMAN

 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 03/09/2012

TAGS: PREL PGOV ZI

SUBJECT: JONATHAN MOYO ON ZANU-PF TURMOIL

 

REF: A) HARARE 448 B) HARARE 326

 

Classified By: Ambassador Christopher Dell under Section 1.4 b/d

 

-------

Summary

-------

 

1. (C) Former Information Minister and Presidential

Spokesman Jonathan Moyo told poleconchief May 24 that

President Robert Mugabe continues to face internal ZANU-PF

opposition, primarily from the Mujuru faction, both in the

GOZ cabinet and in the provinces. There is also a split

within Mugabe's inner circle as to whether to call an

Extraordinary Congress later this year. Acknowledging past

false hopes that Mugabe would be forced to leave office, Moyo

argued that a constellation of factors*economic collapse,

internal opposition, the SADC-Mbeki initiative, and the

president,s age and declining health*truly imperil

Mugabe,s attempt to cling to office. End Summary.

 

--------------------------------------------- --

Opposition in Cabinet and the Central Committee

--------------------------------------------- --

 

2. (C) Moyo recalled that the March 30 ZANU-PF Central

Committee meeting members had agreed to harmonize

parliamentary and presidential elections in 2010 and had

rushed through an endorsement of Mugabe as the party's

presidential candidate. The Central Committee also backed an

increase in the size of Parliament, selection of Senators

based on proportional representation (an effort by Mugabe,

according to Moyo, to increase his patronage), and election

of a new president by the ruling party's parliamentary

members in the event of the incumbent president dying,

becoming incapacitated, or leaving office. (Ref B)

 

3. (C) At a subsequent Cabinet meeting to consider the

Central Committee's actions, Moyo said that the Mujuru

faction, in indirect opposition to Mugabe, objected to both

the proportional Senate representation and presidential

election recommendations as undemocratic and unfair. Mugabe,

engaging in what Moyo termed the "Stalinist fiction of the

supremacy of the party," responded that the cabinet was

subordinate to the Central Committee, and the Committees

decisions should stand. He was unable to impose his will on

the Cabinet and the matters were referred back to the Central

Committee.

 

4. (C) At an extraordinary session of the Central Committee

on May 4, according to Moyo, members agreed to direct Senate

elections vice selection based on proportional representation

but were unable to reach a decision on the selection of a

replacement president. Moyo commented that the inability of

Mugabe to get the issues agreed upon at the March 30 Central

Committee to Parliament for approval was a clear sign of

erosion of support for the president.

 

--------------------------------------------

An Extraordinary ZANU-PF Congress This Year?

--------------------------------------------

 

5. (C) Because of less than solid support for Mugabe and

because endorsement of Mugabe was rushed through the Central

Committee on March 30, Moyo said ZANU-PF Commissar Elliot

Manyika had publicly proposed an Extraordinary Congress later

this year to bolster support for Mugabe and endorse him for

 

HARARE 00000463 002 OF 003

 

 

president. Yet even within Mugabe's inner circle there was

opposition, principally from Minister of State Security

Didymus Mutasa. Moyo thought Mutasa was piqued at not having

been consulted, hence his opposition. Whatever the reason,

he opined, there were fissures even among those close to

Mugabe.

 

------------------------

Trouble in the Provinces

------------------------

 

6. (C) Moyo said that in preparation for an Extraordinary

Congress, Manyika had planned to elect new ZANU-PF executive

committees in several provinces. As we reported (Ref A),

Mugabe loyalists were defeated in Masvingo and were unable

even to stage an election in Bulawayo. Moyo added that

within the last couple of weeks, they had also been defeated

in Mashonaland East. He predicted the same result if

elections took place soon, as planned in Manicaland. Moyo

stated these provincial elections have demonstrated the

Mujuru faction is still strong and capable of effectively

opposing Mugabe. Moyo, an erstwhile Emmerson Mnangagwa ally,

also thought that by Mnangagwa had tactically erred by

supporting Mugabe; as Mugabe had become weaker, so had

Mnangagwa.

 

----------------------------

A Third Force Still Possible

----------------------------

 

7. (C) Referring to an earlier discussion with the

Ambassador (Ref B), Moyo said strategic discussions were

still ongoing regarding an outside candidate such as Gideon

Gono, Strive Masiyawa, or Simba Makoni. Moyo said the most

likely scenario for the emergence of such a candidate would

involve a ZANU-PF split, probably precipitated by opposition

of the Mujuru faction. For the moment, he, Gono, and the

others, would await developments.

 

-----------------

The End of Mugabe

-----------------

 

8. (C) Moyo noted the difficulty of predicting Zimbabwean

politics. He also acknowledged wrong predictions over the

last several years that the Mugabe era was near its end.

Nevertheless, he argued that there is an historic convergence

of events that make the case for Mugabe,s exit in the near

term: 1) Mugabe was rebuffed in his efforts to extend his

term until 2010*the kind of rebuke that had never occurred

before; 2) the disputes within ZANU-PF have become public,

evidencing Mugabe's inability to maintain party solidarity;

3) Mugabe is 83 years old and incapable of maintaining his

legendary control on the party and individuals around him;

and 4) inflation is spiraling out of control, the economy is

crashing, and the GOZ and Mugabe have no plan for economic

recovery. Moyo also believed the Mbeki-SADC initiative was

creating pressures. Whereas Mugabe first trumpeted the

initiative as an African response, claiming at the same time

that U.S. and European pressure represented inappropriate

efforts at regime change, Mbeki has been in fact, albeit

quietly, challenging Mugabe and his efforts to remain in

power.

 

-------

Comment

-------

 

HARARE 00000463 003 OF 003

 

 

 

9. (C) Moyo, a former cabinet minister and ally of Mugabe,

is now an opponent and his views should be read in that

light. Nevertheless, he maintains good contacts within the

GOZ and ruling party, and his renditions of events have

proved accurate in the past. He is also a shrewd analyst.

As he acknowledges, predictions are just that, but his

opinions are certainly worthy of consideration as he retains

excellent contacts within the senior ranks of ZANU-PF.

 

DELL

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