ZANU PF supporters in Chipinge district have demanded the ouster of party provincial vice-chairperson Dorothy Mabika accusing her of creating parallel structures as political infighting rages on in Manicaland province.
BY KENNETH NYANGANI
The demand was made in a petition dated September 17, addressed to the Zanu PF national leadership including the party’s national chairperson Oppah Muchinguri, national political commissar, Engelbert Rugeje and secretary for legal affairs Munyaradzi Paul Mangwana, among others.
Former provincial youth chairperson, Tondhlana Sikumbuzo, confirmed handing over the petition to the national party leadership.
“We handed over the petition to the party’s national leadership last week in Harare. We were accompanied by some members from the central committee, women and youth league and the petition was signed by officials from all the five constituencies in Chipinge district,” Sikhumbuzo said.
Part of the petition reads: “A delegation from Chipinge district wishes to bring the following to your attention viewed as a growing crisis in Chipinge district. Institutional harassment, recent mass suspensions and prohibition orders aimed at silencing, harassing and eliminating party supporters who are viewed as having placed unwanted candidates at 2018 party primary elections.”
“In her bid to secure power, (Mabika) has continued to create parallel structures that function to protect her multiple land grabs, hearings are not properly constituted and conducted, victims are not given time to respond or defend themselves.”
The Zanu PF supporters demanded the immediate removal of Mabika from the position of provincial vice-chairperson, accusing her of manipulating party structures so that she has an edge over her competitors in the next provincial elections.
“We now live in (a situation of) perpetual reprisals. It is the supporters’ wish to see the return to normalcy through your bold and right standing against despotism. It is our prayer that you leaders may attend the crisis urgently,” reads part of the petition.
Last week, scores of Zanu PF supporters stormed the party’s provincial headquarters offices in Mutare protesting against provincial chair Mike Madiro.
The protesters alleged that Madiro and Mabika were abusing their positions to suspend party members perceived as rivals. The supporters stormed into an office where Mabika was conducting hearings, singing protest songs.
After the incident, Mabika told journalists: “As local leadership we do not have powers to determine elections of the provincial structures. This can only be mandated by the top leadership,” she said.
Efforts to get comment from both Rugeje and Muchinguri were futile as their mobile phones went unanswered.