Bikita West parliamentary aspirant, Madock Chivasa, of the National Constitutional Assembly (NCA), says he is ready to give Zanu PF its second by-election defeat, with the ruling party wary of such an embarrassing recurrence.
By Tatenda Chitagu/Kenneth Nyangani
The Bikita West seat fell vacant in July when Munyaradzi Kereke was recalled from Parliament after his 10-year incarceration for raping a relative.
The by-elections are set to be held in January next year.
A recent visit to Bikita witnessed several campaign rallies in the constituency, as canvassing for support has hit fever-pitch in Zanu PF.
Chivasa, who is also the NCA spokesperson, said he was ready to hand Zanu PF a successive by-election defeat.
“I am very confident that I will win the seat. I am campaigning very hard,” he said in an interview.
Zanu PF is being represented by Beauty Chabaya.
However, the party’s provincial chairperson, Amasa Nenjana said the Norton case will not be replicated in Masvingo.
“In the Norton by-election, some of us sold out. It was an own goal, as there were allegations of factionalism.
This, however, is not the case with the Bikita West by-election,” he said.
“Everyone is determined to win this time around and we are trying our level best so that we retain the seat.”
Meanwhile, Norton MP, Temba Mliswa said he was ready to offer advice to three candidates contesting against Zanu PF in the Chimanimani West by-election scheduled for November 26.
Mliswa, who is revelling in the glory of beating Zanu PF’s Ronald Chindedza in the recent Norton by-election, said the three candidates should dialogue and agree on one of them contesting against the ruling party.
Independent candidate, Edmore Mtetwa, Pesanai Musakanuka of NCA and Peter Gudyanga of the Renewal Democrats of Zimbabwe are fighting it out with Zanu PF’s Nokuthula Matsikenyere.
“The candidates should be resourceful. You can’t campaign in Chimanimani with a small car. It will be difficult for you because the area is mountainous. I am a seasoned campaigner, that is the difference between them and I, and I am, therefore, available for advice,’’ he said.
“They need support from the war veterans, the biggest opposition party in the country, MDC-T, and some disgruntled Zanu PF members and youths, but they should sit together and come up with one candidate. They need volunteers, who can campaign for them. In Norton, I had 500 volunteers, who were advocating for change.’’
Mtetwa told NewsDay he was worried at the level of intimidation from Zanu PF youths. He alleged the ruling party was using food to buy votes.
Mliswa said it was clear that Zanu PF would always use State machinery to win any election.
“What matters now is the strategy you will be using. You should not exit when confronted with violence,’’ he said.