Mugabe swore in Masvingo Provincial Affairs Minister Paul Chimedza, Thokozile Mathuthu (Matabeleland North Provincial Affairs), Webster Shamu (Mashonaland West Provincial Affairs), Happyton Bonyongwe (Justice), Chiratidzo Mabuwa (Youth, Indigenisation and Economic Employment) and Edgar Mbwembwe (Tourism).
Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe congratulates Thokozile Mathuthu after she was sworn in as new Minister of State for Matabeleland North at the State House in Harare. Picture: Xinhua
Although Vice-President Emmerson Mnangagwa remained composed, Mugabe and Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko looked extremely jovial, cracking jokes with newly appointed ministers.
Ministers allegedly perceived to be sympathetic to Mnangagwa include Patrick Chinamasa, who was shuttled from the finance and economic development ministry to a new portfolio, cyber security, threat detection and mitigation, Prisca Mupfumira, who was dropped from the public service, labour and social welfare ministry, which was taken over by Mugabe’s nephew, Patrick Zhuwao, who was coming from the youth, indigenisation and economic empowerment.
Tshinga Dube was also dropped from the war veterans ministry over his alleged siding with the Christopher Mutsvangwa-led Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans’ Association, which has openly challenged Mugabe, his wife Grace and his administration.
The Mutsvangwa war vets faction has also openly supported Mnangagwa, saying he should rather succeed Mugabe than any candidate imposed by the G40 faction, reportedly led by Grace and who are pushing for the defence minister to take over.