Saviour Kasukuwere, a former minister in the Zimbabwean cabinet, plans to challenge incumbent president Emmerson Mnangagwa and opposition leader Nelson Chamisa in the presidential election on August 23.
Kasukuwere, 52, has been living in self-imposed exile in South Africa since the military coup that toppled former president Robert Mugabe in 2017.
This week, he shared: “He has been plotting his political comeback with teasers on social media.” The call has been made, and yes, I will officially announce my candidacy.
The proverbial “cat among the pigeons” is Kasuku: he will separate the Zanu-PF official vote, and maybe even lethally mark Mnangagwa’s possibilities.
Political investigator Ibbo Mandaza
His allies via web-based entertainment are supporting Kasukuwere under a political outfit known as New Collusion Zimbabwe.
“President Kasukuwere represents the voiceless masses, the oppressed, and the disenfranchised citizens in the August 2023 elections, as well as patriots who were violently driven from the shores of the motherland.” According to New Alliance Zimbabwe, “He is standing against black-on-black oppression.”
The former minister is a Mugabe supporter who was associated with the ruling party’s Generation 40 (G40) faction, which wanted Grace Mugabe to succeed her husband.
Kasukuwere was one of the alleged “criminals” that were mentioned by army commanders at a press conference on November 14 in Harare. These people were around Mugabe. Along with a number of former ministers who were associated with G40, he fled to South Africa.
Kasukuwere momentarily got back to Zimbabwe in 2018 whereupon he was captured on defilement accusations. The Harare magistrate’s court later dismissed these, but not before he left the country once more.
After issuing a warrant for his arrest, the Zimbabwe government sought Kasukuwere’s extradition from South Africa in October 2020 to face criminal charges.
According to political analyst Ibbo Mandaza, Kasukuwere’s bid will split the vote for the ruling party.
“Kasuku is like the “cat among the pigeons”: In addition to the toxic ethnic politics in the country, allegations of corruption and looting, and the dire economic situation, he will divide the Zanu-PF presidential vote and possibly even kill Mnangagwa’s chances, Mandaza stated.