Since Independence in 1980 Matabeleland has never been fruitful hunting turf for Zanu PF.
The former ruling party has been pummelled, pruned and punctured in humiliating fashion and it definitely requires massive panelbeating to win an election there. The region has some 2,3 million people, constituting about 20% of the countrys population.
However, much as Zanu PF has attempted to win back Matabeleland, divisions within its own ranks have now exploded into the public domain, scuttling the little progress they could have made.
Over the years Zanu PF has perfected the art of glossing over fierce infighting, giving the impression all is well with rival factions appearing united in public, but drawing daggers for each other nicodemously.
But now that diplomatic phase is over and it appears gloves are off as provincial leaders have shelved any sheepish timidity and are literally washing their linen in public.
Their latest challenge the Isaac Dakamela headache.
Ejected from chairmanship of Bulawayo by the partys provincial co-ordinating committee (PCC) last week, some national heavyweights have come out guns blazing, throwing their weight behind Dakamela, saying the decision was null and void.
Most notable was politburo member Sikhanyiso Ndlovu, widely regarded as the most senior party leader in the province, who said he does not recognise the PCCs decision.
The wrangle spilled into Wednesdays politburo meeting where national chairman Simon Khaya-Moyo was tasked to intervene.
However, what is of interest is that the PCC meeting which decided Dakamelas fate comprised of senior party members, including 14 who sit in Zanu PFs central committee and Joshua Malinga, a politiburo member.
The wrangle comes hard on the heels of another clash of the provinces leadership over a business-grabbing spree by the partys youths who attempted to take over buildings owned by non-blacks under the guise of indigenisation.
They fought subtly and the party ended up with egg on their face after the youths lost court battles in their ambitious bids.
The Dakamela challenge is only the tip of the iceberg in as far as power struggles in Zanu PF are concerned.
In Manicaland, it was outright chaos as results of district elections held two weeks ago were nullified following allegations of massive vote-rigging.
Provincial chairperson Mike Madiro came under fire from aspiring office bearers who accused him of attempting to impose candidates, deviating from the partys constitution.
Elsewhere, Mashonaland West provincial elections which ushered in John Mafa as chairman and saw businessman Phillip Chiyangwa bounce back as his deputy, were not without controversy either.
Mafa was accused of abusing his position as a regional manager for Grain Marketing Board and reportedly gave politicians farm inputs so they would vote for him.
Its all a bit of a mess. Zanu PF will have to clean up its act if it wants to be taken seriously when the primaries come around.