Mugove Tafirenyika 13 September 2018
HARARE – Chiefs have accused Zanu PF of sidelining them after they were
overlooked for the positions of Senate president, deputy Senate president
and chief whip in elections held in Parliament on Tuesday.
The Zanu PF politburo met on Monday prior to the elections to deliberate
on the ruling party’s candidates for the National Assembly speaker and his
deputy’s post as well as that of the presiding officers for the Senate.
The party settled for Jacob Mudenda to retain his speaker’s position with
Tsitsi Gezi deputising him while in the Senate Mable Chinomona will be
president as Mike Nyambuya deputises.
However, the politburo decision that the MPs went along with during
elections irked traditional leaders who came out guns blazing yesterday
accusing the ruling party of looking down upon them.
Chief Siansali of Matabeleland told the Daily News yesterday that
traditional leaders feel let down by the ruling party saying they must be
treated as equals with other MPs.
“We feel we also have capacity to lead and that we are equal members when
we are in Parliament and that is why we are there,” Siansali said.
“We are an important caucus group but at times we are left out for
Pressed to say whether they had ever engaged Zanu PF or President Emmerson
Mnangagwa, Siansali said it was unnecessary for them to do that.
“We did not approach anyone about that but it is not about approaching
Zanu PF but being recognised as MPs just like anyone else who is a member
of the august House.
“In the future we urge them to consider us as well…,” he said.
Traditional leaders have been blamed for dabbling in politics and acting
as Zanu PF’s political commissars during elections.
Recently, they were pampered by Mnangagwa with top-of-the-range vehicles
in a development that was viewed by opposition parties as a vote-buying
gimmick ahead of the July 30 elections.