via Dabengwa retains Zapu presidency – DailyNews Live Jeffrey Muvundusi • 8 December 2015
BULAWAYO – Veteran politician Dumiso Dabengwa shrugged off competition from fellow party presidential aspirants to retain his post as president of Zapu, ahead of the party’s congress to be held in the city from December 15 to 17.
This emerged from the party’s pre-congress provincial conferences that were held over the weekend across the globe.
The conferences were meant to deliberate on suggestions on party policy and possible amendments to the party constitution, as well as make provincial nominees to the National Executive Council that will take over the reins at congress.
It had been anticipated to be tough for Dabengwa after three senior members, party secretary-general Ralph Mguni, party alternate secretary-general Strike Mnkandla and little known UK-based Thulani Nkala had indicated that they were going to challenge the liberation war hero for the top post.
South Africa, Matabeleland South, Bulawayo, Midlands and Europe are among the provinces that have finished the nomination process.
By late yesterday, there was still no confirmation from the Northern provinces where incidentally, no one had expressed intent to challenge Dabengwa.
In Matabeleland South province, Mnkandla reportedly got a miserable three points with Dabengwa scoring over hundred votes.
In the Europe province, Mguni reportedly failed to get any nominations while Nkala also lost to Dabengwa with an unconfirmed margin.
Party spokesperson Iphithule Maphosa confirmed Dabengwa’s endorsement during the provincial conferences.
“A provincial conference is an important process for each of our provinces that precede our people’s congress,” he told the Daily News.
“This is when provinces deliberate and agree on the direction of the party policy and a deeper look is given to the party constitution.
“There can be no congress without provincial conferences.”
Asked about Mnkandla’s challenge to Dabengwa, Maphosa said it was only an example of how democratic Zapu was unlike in Zanu PF where no one dares challenge President Robert Mugabe.
“We are not like Zanu PF where challenging Mugabe is criminal to such an extent that you get killed. In our party, anyone is free to go for any post.
“It is encouraging and a healthy development to see Mnkandla standing up and availing himself for duty.
While election results and numbers are not important to us, we are happy that an internal democratic process was allowed to take place and everyone is happy with the result,” he said.