The Tsholotsho Declaration refers to a clandestine meeting organised by a faction loyal Emmerson Mnangagwa in 2004 to plot Zanu-PF’s succession. The plot's objective was to have Mnangagwa elevated the vice presidency ahead of Joice Mujuru, succeeding the late Simon Muzenda.


A group led by six Zanu PF provincial chairmen, some members of the politburo, central committee, MPs, veterans of the war of liberation met at Dinyane Secondary School in Tsholotsho where an agreement was allegedly struck to install Emmerson Mnangagwa in the presidium following the death of Simon Muzenda.[1]

Under the scheme, Mnangagwa would assume the vice-presidency and eventually the leadership of Zanu PF and the country. The meeting was held ahead of a key Zanu PF congress in 2004. Although Mnangagwa had secured the support of six of the country’s 10 provinces, he was undone by Mugabe’s move to amend the party’s constitution to ensure that one of the party’s vice-presidents was a woman. The decision saw Joice Mujuru being appointed vice-president.[2]


Jonathan Moyo was viewed as a key player in the declaration. Other high profile Zanu-PF members who were alleged to be part of the plot are Jacob Mudenda, Mabel Chinomona, Mike Madiro, Daniel Shumba and July Moyo.[3]

Effects Of The Declaration

Participants in the declaration were suspended from the party with the exception of Mnangagwa who was appointed the Minister of Rural Housing and Social Amenities.[4]


  1. Zanu PF exorcises Tsholotsho ghost, NewsDay, published: September 9, 2013, retrieved: July 27, 2016
  2. Gumbo comes to Mujuru’s defence, attacks Herald, New Zimbabwe, published: October 31, 2014, retrieved: July 27, 2016
  3. Lloyd Mbiba, 'They want to topple Mugabe', Daily News, published: November 1, 2014, retrieved: July 27, 2016
  4. Alex Magaisa, The Year Of The Crocodile, Alex Magaisa, published: December 10, 2014, retrieved: July 27, 2016