Zanu PF on the brink of collapse as bitter divisions escalate

POLITICAL temperature is boiling up in Zanu PF’s Mashonaland West province after acting chair Abiel Mujeri at the weekend barred provincial members from Zvimba, Chegutu, Makonde and Kadoma from presiding over district elections in Hurungwe and Kariba in a move rivals say was meant to stifle them.

According to Zanu PF insiders, Mujeri decreed that the elections be supervised by war veterans and ex-war collaborators.

Mujeri and Zanu PF Veterans of the Liberation Struggle (ZVLS) wing’s provincial chairman, Happison Muchechetere constituted the management team overseeing polls in Hurungwe and Kariba, which in most instances turned chaotic.

The ZVLS is a new wing of the ruling party.

“Voting in Hurungwe failed to kick off at Robert Mugabe district, Hurungwe Central constituency over branch registers after some names were plucked out by factions battling for provincial posts,” a source said.

“In some areas, the elections were characteristed by massive rigging and violence in some administration districts. In Mhondoro-Ngezi elections were postponed indefinitely, while ballot stuffing characterised some elections,” the source said.

A notice circulating on Zanu PF-affiliated social media groups confirmed the cancellation of polling in Mhondoro-Ngezi district.

“Mhondoro-Ngezi district elections have been cancelled till further notice. Whoever defies this order will face disciplinary action,” Mujere said.

Throughout Mashonaland West province, polling was aborted in over twenty districts.

Chaotic scenes played out in Mhangura over violence, while in Chinhoyi which falls under Makonde administration district, massive rigging was recorded amid meddling by sitting Members of Parliament (MPs) and councillors.

Five districts in Chinhoyi are yet to vote after the plebiscites were suspended over allegations of voter manipulation.

Insiders also told elections were called off in Munyapi district near the gold-rich Eldorado Mine situated outside Chinhoyi town after machete-wielding gangs of artisanal miners, numbering nearly 500, threatened to unleash violence.

Skirmishes were witnessed in the mining community of Mutorashanga, Mt Hampden, Norton and Kadoma, the source added.

In Banket, Zvimba South constituency, elections failed to kick-off as scheduled last Tuesday when party members challenged the voters’ lists, accusing senior Zanu PF ‘shefs’ of manipulation.

Contacted for comment, acting provincial chairman Mujeri played down the chaos engulfing the party.

“There are in-house challenges which cannot stop us from completing the restructuring exercise, we will sort them out. Elections will be held in those places after we finish Hurungwe and Kariba,” he said.

Mujeri is set to contest for chairmanship against Provincial Affairs minister, Mary Mliswa-Chikoka, Information deputy minister Kindness Paradza and Vengai Musengi, the party provincial youth league chairman.

The Zanu PF Mashonaland West provincial chairman post fell vacant in June following the elevation of Justice minister, Ziyambi Ziyambi to the party’s Politburo, the highest decision-making body outside congress.

However, Ziyambi is reportedly keen to retain control over provincial politics through his proxy, Mujeri.

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