Webster Shamu causes confusion in Parly
DISGRACED former Cabinet minister and suspended ZANU-PF legislator for Chegutu East, Webster Shamu, raised eyebrows in Parliament after he moved a motion to praise President Robert Mugabe and the country’s security forces, before he suddenly withdrew it, only for him to curiously re-instate it this week.
Shamu, one of President Mugabe’s self-styled praise singers, left his colleagues in the august House wondering what was going on behind the scenes after the former ZANU-PF national political commissar suddenly withdrew the motion.
Among other things, the motion seeks to “recognise the iconic role and visionary leadership of the Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Gabriel Mugabe.”
Coincidentally, when Shamu withdrew the motion on Tuesday last week, he had been conspicuously excluded from the list of the party’s delegates that were to grace the lavish ZANU-PF conference that took place in the resort town of Victoria Falls. Other suspected members like former security minister Nicholas Goche attended the ZANU-PF indaba.
Shamu had introduced the motion some weeks previously, only for him to suddenly withdraw it without giving any reasons.
However, this week, Shamu re-introduced the motion again, raising more questions than answers on what could be taking place behind the scenes in the ruling ZANU-PF party which is in the throes of succession fights that saw him being suspended from the party for three years on allegations of plotting to unseat President Mugabe.
When the Financial Gazette sought to get Shamu to explain his summersault, he angrily refused to do so, saying he does not discuss politics with anyone, let alone the press, before curtly ending the telephone conversation.
Shamu, a praise singer of repute who once described President Mugabe as “Cremora” (a cloying powder milk brand by global nutrition firm, Nestle) is on record as saying he wished he was President Mugabe’s own son.
“The answer, which may sound terse and curt, is that it is because he wanted to withdraw it, as motions are made, and therefore unmade at will. His justification for this behaviour is a mystery best known to him,” said Movement for Democratic Change (MDC-T) legislator, Jessie Majome, who is the chairperson of the Parliamentary Legal Committee, when asked what she made of Shamu’s strange manoeuvres.
Shamu is fighting for his own political survival in the treacherous waters that the ruling ZANU-PF party has become.
He and his wife, Constance, are currently semi-detached members of the ruling party after their names were linked to a faction that putatively plotted to unseat the veteran leader.
At last year’s ZANU-PF congress held in Harare, he cut a lone figure on the periphery of the event, as his former colleagues avoided him like the bubonic plague.
In August this year, he and his wife suffered untold humiliation after they were reportedly chased from a VIP tent at the National Heroes Acre during the Heroes’ Day commemorations.
Shamu has tried to console himself by enrolling for a Masters degree in marketing at the Midlands State University while plotting his return.
Shamu is not new to life in the wilderness, having been dismissed from government for his role in the 1989 Willowgate scandal, but somehow managed to sashay his way back into much later, rising to become a career Cabinet minister.
He is a former disc jockey with the Rhodesian Broadcasting Corporation.
He skipped the border to be a ZANLA propaganda chief via the Voice of Zimbabwe channel on Radio Mozambique in the 1970s.
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