Joice Mujuru shows her political cards

Mujuru's People First party manifesto points to business acumen. (Aaron Ufumeli)

Mujuru's People First party manifesto points to business acumen. (Aaron Ufumeli)

Zimbabwe’s former vice-president Joice Mujuru has come out in the open about her future, an indication she will challenge former boss President Robert Mugabe – or his anointed successor – in the next watershed elections in three years’ time.

Mujuru had kept the nation guessing about her future following her ouster from the Zanu-PF party and government in December at the sixth Zanu-PF congress.

She was sacked after a spirited attack by First Lady Grace Mugabe during her Meet the People Tour rallies, who alleged Mujuru was planning to assassinate Mugabe.

Since being ousted, she has chosen to keep a low profile and only made a few public appearances with veiled pronouncements.

But Mujuru, who has been linked to the People First party, unveiled her party manifesto on Tuesday, which points to business acumen.

“Since my last statement issued in early June 2015, we have been hard at work and I wish to share with you, in brief, how we propose to translate our vision for a better Zimbabwe into reality, through the proposed Blueprint to Unlock Investment and Leverage for Development [BUILD],” she said in her introduction.

She touched on a number of issues in the manifesto, from acknowledging dual citizenship, promoting and supporting a free press and repealing the controversial Access to Information and Protection of Privacy Act to reviewing the licensing criteria and methodology under the Broadcasting Services Act.

She said People First would give the vote to Diasporans, repeal the Public Order and Security Act, realign the Criminal Code Codification and Reform Act, ensure the Electoral Act would comply fully with the Constitution’s provisions and requirements as well as respect property rights through addressing historical compulsory acquisition by way of compensation.

Mujuru vowed to protect and promote legislation that supported conservancies and tourism.

Multilateral and bilateral creditors, she said, would be engaged to commit to a full debt resolution strategy. Zimbabwe owes several institutions, including the World Bank and International Monetary Fund, large sums of money. It has since engaged with the Bretton Woods institutions to repay a $1.8-billion (about R24.6-billion) loan it owes them.

The indigenisation law would be revamped with a view to emphasising economic empowerment that attracts foreign direct investment and promotes the broad-based socioeconomic and infrastructure development objectives.

People First said it would ensure all political leaders were accountable to the citizenry and abided by state laws.

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