THE battle for Makoni South is a tricky one. High-ranking politicians will be battling to represent the constituency. There is Pishayi Muchauraya (MDC-T), Davis Mundirwira (MDC), Zanu PF’s Mandiitawepi Chimene and journalist Geoffrey Nyarota, who filed as an independent.
Report by Obey Manayiti
NewsDay reporter Obey Manayiti (ND) last week spoke to Muchauraya (PM), Chimene (MC) and Mundirwira (DM) on their plans for the constituency if elected. Nyarota had not yet responded to questions sent to him by the time of going to print. Below are excerpts of the interviews starting with Muchauraya.
ND:You have been Makoni South MP for the past term, what new are you promising people of this constituency if you are re-elected?
PM: If I am re-elected I have a number of projects which I should finish. In the past five years, I started many projects like the mothers’ shelter which we constructed at Rukweza Clinic. We need to put final touches to it and the same applies to Nyagumbo Clinic. We also want to register Gandanzara Clinic so that it starts operating.
We were also in the process of electrifying Mauswa section in Nyazura and to complete the Mavhezhe-Chikandiwa Bridge. We are also embarking on a massive hydro-electricity project at Osborne Dam so that people benefit on the local capital resource available.
ND: Is this the way you spent your allocation of Constituency Development Fund (CDF)?
PM: On the issue of CDF we had 10 wards and the money was divided by the number of the wards so they all got an equal amount. Every ward benefited and like in Ward 23, CDF money was used to renovate schools.
ND: So which funds did you use on the projects you mentioned above?
PM: We used private funds. We will continue to source and use private funds because we need to provide clean water and do something on the bad road network.
ND: A lot has been said about yourself by other contestants. How do you view the competition in Makoni South?
PM: I think most of them have not demonstrated the intention or good intention to represent the people of Makoni, save for the fact that they want employment. They have demonstrated that they are gold diggers.
ND: Why do you say that?
PM: Because each time they talk about wanting to represent the people of Makoni they always talk about me, my person and never about what they want to do for the people of this constituency.
I view them as State security agents wanting to eliminate me from the political scene so that they get in by default.
Chimene (Zanu PF)
ND: The electorate might want to know who is Chimene, can you briefly introduce yourself
MC: Mandiitawepi Chimene was born in 1959 in Chimene village in Nyazura. I left the country in 1976 to join the liberation war. In 1980 I came back into the country and I later joined the CIO department where I rose within the ranks to become senior intelligence officer. I left the organisation in 2000 to join active politics. In 2006 I was a Senator for Mutasa-Nyanga.
ND: What is it that inspired you to vie for this seat?
MC: I was motivated by my political experience. I am a war veteran and I worked for this country. That alone pushed me to vie for this seat so that I confront the enemy head-on.
ND: Who is the enemy you are referring to?
MC: It is the MDC. Those people who want to give the country back to our colonisers.
ND: What did the former MP fail to do that you hope to achieve in this constituency?
MC: He did nothing. I came here because the people of Makoni approached me. When I came here there was not even a single borehole working and the roads were so bad. Currently I am now repairing the boreholes. The former MP did virtually nothing.
ND: Who is Davis Mundirwira?
DM: I am 40, born and bred in Nyazura. I represent a new generation of people of Makoni South who want to see change in their area.
ND: What inspired you to vie for this seat?
DM: The people of Makoni South and a group of professionals asked me to represent them in that constituency. I am talking about a group of doctors and lawyers whom I cannot name at this stage. These people are from across Makoni South, but the majority are from my party.
ND: What are you promising the people of Makoni South?
DM: We want to move away from the politics of singing choruses all the time to say that we will create jobs and develop such and such areas. This chorus has been sung for the past 33 years. The team I am working with is a team of practical people some of them being doctors who will come to the constituency monthly to assist people free of charge. Growing up in Makoni South, I know every corner and all the things that people there want corrected. We have bridges such as Kadzungwe which was destroyed by Cyclone Eline and was never attended to. Right now it’s a problem to connect Makoni South and West. I also have initiatives to rehabilitate the young people there because the crime rate is just too much. Young people want jobs and other programmes like sports which will keep them away from crime.
ND: Finally your party has been described as regional. Do you think you can pull votes in Manicaland province which is regarded as an MDC-T stronghold?
DM: That notion comes from people who are out of touch with reality.
This comes from people who are afraid of our rapid growth and these are efforts to discredit us, but I am assuring you that come August 2 people will be shocked by our performance across the country particularly Makoni South.