The trial of a ZANU PF member, Goodman Tamuona Musariri on charges of undermining the authority of President Emmerson Mnangagwa was expected to commence at the Bindura Magistrates Court this Monday.
According to his lawyers, the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), Musariri was arrested in 2020 over his posts on social media.
He is accused of circulating messages on three WhatsApp groups endorsing Vice President Constantino Chiwenga to take over leadership of the ZANU PF party as President Mnangagwa lacks authority and drive to lead the ruling party and Zimbabwe.
Musariri allegedly posted messages on three WhatsApp groups namely “People’s General Xi-wenga” “Zanu PF Mash Central Build Up” and “Legacy of our struggle” of which he is the administrator.
He is being represented by lawyers Tinomuda Shoko and Mutape Paidamoyo Saurombe of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights.
His WhatsApp messages denounced Mnangagwa while endorsing Vice President Constantino Chiwenga to take over and the messages read as follows,”We agree that the likes of vaMnangagwa, who only has less than 18 years to live on this universe, must maximise his retirement time. After all, he has nothing to offer Zimbabwe except to loot it the more for 18 years,” one of the messages read.
“I recommend that General Chiwenga takes over and be at liberty to formulate a GNU [government of national unity] that will adopt meritocracy, pragmatism and honesty.
“Mnangagwa must resign or retire early and be given a golden handshake as constructive dismissal. He needs the maximum of 18 years that he is left with under this universe!!”
Another message read: “President vanoda kuti vasvike 2030 (he wants to get to 2030)? Thomas Mapfumo goes on to say ‘achida kunge achiiteiko aisa nyika munzara yakadai kubva 2017 (what more can he offer, he has impoverished the nation since he too over as president in 2017)??”