By Blessings Mashaya
Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s daughter Farai on Saturday wedded Gerald Mlotshwa — lawyer to the Midlands godfather’s co-deputy and perceived political rival Phelekezela Mphoko — at a lavish ceremony that was held at the upmarket Leopard Rock Hotel in Vumba.
Both the bride, Farai, and the groom, Mlotshwa, were divorcees.
And as was to be expected, the wedding was well-attended by many of Mnangagwa’s perceived political allies in his mooted bid to succeed President Robert Mugabe.
Among those present were Psychomotor minister Josiah Hungwe, army commander General Constantine Chiwenga, former minister July Moyo and a host of top businesspeople.
Also in attendance were Foreign Affairs minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi, under-fire Prosecutor-General Johannes Tomana and former War Veterans minister Christopher Mutsvangwa.
A senior government official who was present at the wedding told the Daily News yesterday that Mphoko was not at the wedding and that security at the hotel had been tight.
“Security was water tight at the wedding so much that all hotel guests and visitors had to go through serious security measures,” he said.
While Mnangagwa is said to be the leader of Team Lacoste, his perceived political rival Mphoko is associated with the Generation 40 (G40) faction that is rabidly opposed to the Midlands godfather succeeding Mugabe.
In a political attack early this year that many Zanu PF insiders interpreted as a thinly-veiled assault on Mnangagwa and the party faction loyal to him, Mphoko said there was a dangerous notion that was being pushed within the party that the country’s next president should be Karanga — Zimbabwe’s biggest Shona sub-group — to which Mnangagwa belongs.
“There is nowhere in the Constitution where it says the country was liberated by a Ndebele, Karanga or Zezuru. The Constitution says the country was liberated by Zapu and Zanu. So what we are hearing now, that since Mugabe is Zezuru, the next should be a Karanga is misplaced. It will not succeed,” he said.
Mlotshwa is representing Mphoko in the gaffe-prone VP’s staggering $50 million defamation claim against Associated Newspapers of Zimbabwe (ANZ) — publishers of the market-leading Daily News, Daily News on Sunday and the Weekend Post.
The court action followed a June 5, 2015 article that Mphoko took exception to, that was based on a Daily News interview with firebrand former war veteran’s leader Jabulani Sibanda.
In the story, Sibanda claimed that Mphoko had sold out during the liberation struggle when he allegedly diverted weapons meant for the late Joshua Nkomo’s Zapu to Zanu — a move that Sibanda further claimed could have led to the needless deaths of thousands of people. Daily News