via Zanu (PF) hawks jostle for Bhasikiti’s seat. 27 May 2015 by Regerai Tukutuku
Zanu (PF) hawks in Masvingo have started jostling for the Mwenezi East parliamentary seat and the Masvingo senatorial seat . This follows the party’s expulsion of former Energy and Power development minister Dzikamai Mavhaire and former provincial affairs minister Kudakwashe Bhasikiti.
A record 15 candidates are seeking election to replace Bhasikiti. Leading the pack to replace Mavhaire is the party’s losing senatorial candidate in the 2013 party primaries, Clemence Makwarimba ,while former senator Maina Mandava has staged a dramatic come-back.
Makwarimba, who retired as chief executive officer of Masvingo rural district council last year, has already thrown his hat into the ring. “Obviously as the person who contested against Mavhaire during party primaries ahead of the polls in 2013 I am the rightful candidate to take over the reins,. I think this is my time,” he said.
Mandava, who served as Masvingo senator from 2008 to 2013, said that as a woman she would use her links with Grace Mugabe to land the post. “All the developments we are witnessing today are as a result of Grace Mugabe’s intervention – hence I think she will use her clout to support women,” said Mandava.
“If Mahofa was crowned provincial affairs minister courtesy of the first lady’s support so why can I not also make it as a woman ,”she said. “After all I have the experience and would use it for the benefit of the party,” said Mandava.
In Mwenezi East constituency 15 little-known party activists have joined the fray to replace Bhasikiti.
“We have 15 people who have expressed their interest to replace Bhasikiti and nearly all of them are nonentities except Isaac Shumba, who is in the central committee,” said a highly place source within the party. “We are just playing a wait and see attitude.”
Zanu (PF) Masvingo provincial chairman Paradzai Chakona said they had not yet started vetting candidates. He said those interested in the posts were free to canvass for support but hinted that there would be a lot of disappointments since the party will follow laid down procedures in coming up with the candidates.
Mavhaire and Bhasikiti were expelled from Zanu (PF) last week necessitating a by-electoion in Mwenezi East where the fromer provincioal affairs minister was the MP. As for the Masvingo senatorial seat Zanu (PF) will just replace Mavhaire with any member of its choice since he got his post through proportional representation.