Mliswa confident of thrashing Zanu PF

via Mliswa confident of thrashing Zanu PF – DailyNews Live 8 June 2015

HARARE – Despite having been arrested several times and his supporters being subjected to brutal attacks by Zanu PF apparatchiks ahead of Wednesday’s by-elections that are being boycotted by the country’s main opposition, Temba Mliswa is confident that he will regain the hotly-contested Hurungwe West seat.

In a statement yesterday, the garrulous former Zanu PF chairman for Mashonaland West before his expulsion from the party, said while he had watched helplessly as his supporters — including his chief elections officer Goodwell Zinyama — were being arrested and victimised, he was nevertheless confident that he would win the seat.

“The decision to participate or stand for office as a citizen is a right bestowed to every individual and should be peacefully enjoyed. This right remains grounded in the ethos of the liberation struggle, one in which great sacrifices were made by ordinary, gallant and dedicated daughters and sons of Zimbabwe.

“This right should be cherished and guarded jealously, without anyone claiming superior entitlement. We are equal before the law and under God,” Mliswa said.

A panicky Zanu PF has so far dispatched its two vice presidents, Phelekezela Mphoko and Emmerson Mnangagwa, as it cranked up its campaigns for its embattled candidate Keith Guzah — who has faced all kinds of allegations.

And with the by-elections only a day away, Mliswa claimed that Guzah was guilty of transporting people from outside Hurungwe West in his desperate bid to win the constituency.

“Following my decision to stand as an independent candidate, residents and constituent members of Hurungwe West have been mercilessly subjected to varying forms and degrees of violence, all intended to undermine the existence of a conducive environment for the holding of free, fair and credible elections.

“The continued prevalence of coercive campaign methods, violence and intimidation unfortunately prevailing in Hurungwe West defies these fundamental tenets and principles which are founding values of the Zimbabwe we covet as provided in the Constitution.

“As an aspiring independent candidate, I have registered these concerns on numerous occasions with the authorities, including with the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (Zec),” Mliswa said.

Blasting Zec, the statutory body mandated with conducting elections in the country, Mliswa said if the institution had any modicum of “decency and justice” it would postpone the violence-mired polls.

“It is saddening to note that the institutions mandated with safeguarding our lives and rights have been subverted, rendered impotent and unable to protect the many innocent, defenceless, unarmed citizens under attack from supposed custodians of national values.

“To restore confidence in institutions and systems, the responsible authorities need to urgently return to their constitutionally-enshrined mandate for purposes of instilling confidence in the electorate and citizens to avert the situation of our country being seen and viewed as a pariah state with selective application of the law,” he said.

But despite what he referred to as an uneven playing field, Mliswa said he was being spurred on by the resilience demonstrated by the fearless villagers of Hurungwe.

“Humbled and encouraged by such commitment, sacrifices and resilience by ordinary citizens of Zimbabwe and the constituents of Hurungwe West, as an individual, I affirm my resolve to stand for what is just and fair, the civil heroes and heroines of Hurungwe West and Zimbabwe will emerge victorious and justice and peace shall reign once again,” he said.