BY KENNETH nyangani
ZANU PF has retained the Chimanimani East ward 16 council seat after thrashing the opposition MDC in a by-election held on Saturday.
Zanu PF candidate Charles Chinamira garnered 1 589 votes against MDC’s Erasmus Brightwell Murada who got 231 votes.
The seat fell vacant following the death of Zanu PF’s Tendai Chibaya, who collapsed and died during the ruling party’s annual conference in December last year.
MDC provincial spokesperson for Manicaland David Panganai yesterday accused the ruling party of using dirty tactics, including dangling food aid, to retain the seat.
“The ground was not even, Zanu PF used intimidating tactics. We were told that (Chimanimani East MP) Joshua Sacco was using Cyclone Idai hand-outs to lure voters. Recently, he frog-marched villagers to attend Zanu PF rallies and it is not fair,” he said.
“We are also told Joshua Sacco told villagers that Cyclone Idai will return if they voted for the MDC. When it comes to elections, Zanu PF has never been clean, they always employ dirty tactics. After all, we are going to continue to fight this regime which has bought untold suffering to millions of Zimbabweans.”
Sacco could not be reached for comment as his mobile phone went unanswered.