Women In Politics

Have we seen the last of controversial Mandi Chimene?

By Buhle Tshavango
In a show of karma, Manicaland’s outspoken Minister of State Mandiitawepi Chimene has been served a generous serving of what she used to belligerently dish out to members of the Lacoste following her booting out alongside fellow Zanu PF alleged criminals.
Mandy, as she is affectionately known in political circles was in the forefront when it came to purging alleged Zanu PF members aligned to Lacoste faction which was reportedly fronted by Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The vocal politician who had positioned herself as a close ally of former first-lady Grace Mugabe, had no sacred cows in the party as she would openly lambast Mnangagwa a politburo member with confidence.
However, her open alliance with Grace Mugabe has unfortunately ensured that together with the former first lady, she too has had her seat reserved out in the cold.
The recent unprecedented unfolding of events in the Zimbabwean political field came as a surprise for many, and the same can be said of Chimene who had imagined herself set for gold.
Commenting on the reshuffle of Cabinet ministers in October Chimene might have ironically predicted a turn of events that would see her fall from grace when she said the axed ministers were victims of their own actions as they failed to play according to their appointers tune in reference to the President.
“I don’t know what tomorrow holds for me, but for now Mandi is safe. The axe may fall on me, but history will judge me as a straight talker,” said Chimene.
Her ‘straight talk’, which mainly included an onslaught on anyone who failed to fall in line with her paymaster, culminated in her being expelled from the party. Her absence at the time of purging sent tongues wagging on whether or not she had fled the country.
She, however, denied the accusations saying she was currently attending official business in China, that being so news of her ousting was received while attending the Zimbabwe-China Friendship Association business with our friends from the east.
Her fate and those of fellow axed politicians will be decided by the turn of events as they unfold, she is expected back in the country this Thursday.
The 58-year-old politician rose to political stardom when she was elected Member of Parliament for Makoni South constituency and was later appointed Minister of State for Manicaland’s Provincial Affairs replacing Chris Mushowe. The outspoken war veteran has served the party for several years.

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