Before the Norton by-election, Zanu PF had all but taken polls, since 2013, as routine victories and this was aided by the opposition’s boycotts.
Source: Mliswa’s win ominous for Zanu PF – NewsDay Zimbabwe October 24, 2016
Comment: NewsDay Editor
However, Norton was a different ball game altogether, as Zanu PF faced stiff opposition in the form of Temba Mliswa, who had the support of MDC-T and some war veterans.
Zanu PF went all out and they were accused of violence and vote buying, but all these Stone Age tactics came to naught.
Taking nothing away from Mliswa, Saturday’s election was a slap in the face for Zanu PF by an electorate that is weary of party’s policies.
The ruling party cannot expect to win an election in this environment, where the economy has all but tanked and joblessness is at an all-time high and continues to grow.
In simple terms, people no longer trust Zanu PF, as its electoral promises have proved to be hollow in the past.
Zanu PF can dish out stands to everyone, but what good is a stand when people do not have money to build and are hungry because of Zanu PF’s misdeeds?
No one will vote for Zanu PF when they have to endure hours queuing for cash and are exposed to the vagaries of the weather.
The ruling party cannot expect to win an election when there is the looming spectre of bond notes, which have been condemned by nearly everyone, with others in Zanu PF also making their displeasure known.
Then there is the issue of corruption, which Zanu PF seems to condone and in such circumstances, it cannot expect to win an election.
Zimbabweans are tired of this party that seems clueless of how to remove the country from the mess it is in.
So the Norton by-election was a vote against Zanu PF and was punishment for the party’s seeming indifference to the mounting problems in the country.
As long as the economy remains like this, then the Norton by-election is ominous for Zanu PF and they can expect a serious routing in the 2018 general elections.
It’s as if the party has forgotten how it lost the 2008 general elections and it should be reminded that the economy played a major part in that.
Zanu PF should know that it can use all manner of violence and vote buying, but this is no longer enough, Zimbabweans want to be able to put food on their tables, they want jobs and a working economy.
This is not rocket science or anything complicated, these are the promises Zanu PF made three years ago and they should deliver on them.
If Zanu PF continues on this self-destructive path, then 2018 will see the end of the party, as they will lose elections resoundingly.