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Shock in Zim as Mnangagwa family capture key government institutions

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s ministerial appointments this week have given Zimbabweans food for thought with glaring evidence showing that the First Family has now captured key institutions in Zimbabwe.

While Mnangagwa is the President and his wife Auxillia automatically the First Lady, the Zanu-PF leader appointed his son Kudakwashe David as Deputy Minister of Finance.

He also named his nephew Tongai Mnangagwa as the Deputy Minister of Tourism and Hospitality.

Already, one of the President’s sons, Sean Mnangagwa is a top officer in the Presidential Guard.

Mnangagwa is being criticised over his appointments with critics arguing that he is creating a family dynasty.

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Quick summary of the Mnangagwa Family and their positions

Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa* (President)

Auxillia Mnangagwa (First Lady)

David Kudakwashe Mnangagwa (Deputy Minister of Finance)

Tongai Mnangagwa (Deputy Minister Tourism)

Sean Mnangagwa – (Presidential Guard)

Emmerson Mnangagwa Junior (Already participating in official meetings with foreign investors)

What has been the reaction?

The opposition Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) said the President’s decision was “worrying”.

“Particularly worrying is his appointment of his son and nephew as deputy ministers of finance and tourism, respectively.

“Equally disturbing is his retention, from the previous government, of several ministers who were rejected during his own party, ZANU PF’s primary elections, and in general elections,” they said.

“The reappointment of old and tired loyalists exacerbates concerns about the lack of commitment to fresh perspectives and innovative ideas within the regime.

“It is also concerning that to accommodate friends and family, Mr. Mnangagwa has expanded the cabinet from the previous 22 to 26 ministries or government departments. The bloated cabinet raises serious questions about the regime’s commitment to using the nation’s resources prudently.”

Another opposition party, the United Zimbabwe Alliance (UZA) said Mnangagwa’s new cabinet failed to meet the expectations of many Zimbabweans who are suffering from a collapsing economy and a moribund local currency.

“Prices of basic commodities have been on an upward trend, pushing many Zimbabweans, especially the underprivileged into abject poverty.

“UZA had hoped President Mnangagwa’s cabinet would show, at least, his concern and efforts to turn around the economy and the fortunes of the people of Zimbabwe, especially young people who bear the brunt of rising unemployment.

“Instead, the newly appointed cabinet falls short in a number of respects, the following in particular:

“The President’s brazen display of nepotism by appointing his son David Kudakwashe Mnangagwa as the Deputy Finance Minister and his nephew Tongai Mafidhi Mnangagwa as Deputy Minister of Tourism and Hospitality is synonymous with dynastic succession and should never be condoned in a democratic Zimbabwe,” noted UZA.

Mnangagwa is also facing backlash from the public after retaining Kirsty Coventry as Sports Minister. Coventry, in 2022, was ranked last on the list of cabinet ministers who performed well.

Despite failing to revive the economy during the last five years, Mthuli Ncube was retained as Finance Minister.