Source: Zanu PF, ZPF wrangle ahead of Bikita poll – DailyNews Live January 13, 2017
HARARE – Zanu PF and the Joice Mujuru-led Zimbabwe People First (ZPF)
opposition party are trading accusations over violence ahead of the Bikita
While six candidates have successfully filed their papers at the
Nomination Court that sat at the Masvingo Magistrates’ Court, the main
battle is between the ruling party’s women’s league provincial executive
member Beauty Chabaya and ZPF’s Kudakwashe Gopo.
The constituency – a political hotbed where gruesome violence erupted
ahead of a by-election in 2001 – was previously held by incarcerated Zanu
PF rapist, Munyaradzi Kereke.
The ruling party is accusing ZPF Masvingo interim chairperson Claudius
Makova, a former Zanu PF provincial executive member, of unleashing
violence against its supporters.
Speaking to the Daily News yesterday, Zanu PF Masvingo provincial
political commissar Jappy Jaboon accused a police officer, he claimed was
a ZPF member, of being violent towards Zanu PF supporters.
“A police constable based at Nyika Police Station tore a Zanu PF T-shirt
in front of people at Nyika Bus Terminus shouting unprintable words and
denouncing Zanu PF,” he claimed, adding that “the officer is a strong ZPF
supporter and was in a meeting today (Tuesday) at Makova’s house where ZPF
candidate (Gopo) stays. The police officer also intimidated the provincial
youth chairman Norbert Ndaarombe.”
“Makova is naturally a violent person from the time he has been in Zanu
PF,” Jaboon said.
“He is frustrated, realising that many people who were recruited to ZPF no
longer like Mujuru’s party. His party has nothing to offer to the people
and hundreds of people who had joined ZPF are now crossing the floor back
to their mother party, Zanu PF,” he said.
However, Makova came out guns blazing, saying his former party had run out
of strategies to win an election.
“Zanu PF started its terror campaign when (Zanu PF political commissar
Saviour) Kasukuwere and (politburo member Josiah) Hungwe visited the area.
During that time, our supporters were beaten in ward 10,” he claimed.
“Zanu PF also brutalised a pregnant women,” he said, adding that the
President Robert Mugabe-led party was “panicking (and) they don’t know
what to do to win this election”.
Makova also savaged Jaboon, labelling him a “young boy in politics”.
“He knows that I am his father . . . we know politics. Look, when I was
still in Zanu PF, I was the king maker of Bikita as a whole, so do you
think we can fail to win . . .?” he asked.
Makova further claimed that; “I am the one who made Chibaya to have a
position in Masvingo provincial women’s league executive and she is also
my relative. I can’t unleash violence against my sister’s daughter”.
“Zanu PF is using chiefs to intimidate people but people are now tired,
they want something better.
“Even if they rig this coming election, we are going to win. They are
beating people but they want to accuse us. Ask them to bring evidence,” he
Recently, Masvingo Provincial Affairs minister Shuvai Mahofa threatened to
unleash violence in the constituency against anti-Zanu PF supporters.
She told party supporters who gathered at Gwindingwi Primary School on
Wednesday last week to vote “wisely” or else suffer the consequences.
“Haa, munozviziva, muno hamusi mekutamba namo (You all know it. This is
not a constituency to play silly games). Kune vamwe vakatsakatika muno umu
gore riya, munoriziva. Handei tinovhota zvakanaka. (There are some who
disappeared in this constituency as you know. Let us go and vote wisely),”
Meanwhile, other candidates contesting in the by-election are National
Constitutional Assembly’s spokesperson Madock Chivasa, Terence Makumbo of
little-known Progressive Democrats of Zimbabwe (PDZ), independent
candidate Innocent Muzvimbiri and former Bikita West legislator Heya
Shoko, who will also stand as an independent.