Mpofu, during the campaign period, said the MDC Alliance has no capacity to rule and develop the country and the electorate should vote for a tried and tested revolutionary party whose interest is to uplift their lives.
Mpofu said this during a rally in Lupane to drum up support for the party’s Lupane East candidate, Mbongeni Dube, ahead of by-elections on August 3.
Mpofu whipped village heads into line when he said they have a role to play in making people vote for the right party which is Zanu-PF.
“We are not voting to win but we are voting so that our lives will be well catered for. It is so obvious that we will win because we had so many elections and all the votes went to Zanu-PF.
“Village heads should continue fishing for more people to vote for the winning party,” he said.
Mpofu also promised to drill boreholes at Lupaka Clinic in Lupane.
Zanu-PF’s Dube was confirmed winner as Zanu-PF held on to the Lupane East parliamentary seat vacant since Sithembile Gumbo died in April.
Zanu-PF also comfortably retained two council seats in Bubi Ward 22 and Nkayi Ward 23.
Dube polled 6,369 votes to beat closest challenger Dalumuzi Khumalo of the MDC who secured 4,505 votes.
The MDC-T’s Given Ncube placed third with 363 votes; Andrew Tshaba of the Mthwakazi People’s Republic was third with 81 votes and Gezekile Mkhwebu of ZAPU was fourth with 52 votes.
Nelson Mkandla of the National Action Party had 51 votes; Njabulo Sibanda of the National Patriotic Front polled 39 votes; Alice Sibanda of the National Constitutional Assembly secured 27 votes and Morgan Ndlovu of the Labour Economists and African Democrats Party brought the rear with 18 votes.
Lupane East has 14 wards and 20,495 registered voters.
In Bubi Ward 22, Zanu-PF’s claimed victory with 449 votes to beat the MDC’s Present Chile who polled 216 votes. The Labour Economists and African Democrats Party’s Sylvester Zodziwa polled nine votes.
In Nkayi Ward 23, Zanu-PF’s Qhubani Nyoni secured victory with 394 votes, beating the MDC’s Bekezela Moyo into second with 176 votes as the MDC-T took third with 147 votes. The Mthwakazi People’s Republic candidate had 16 votes.
The MDC’s elections secretary Jacob Mafume said “coercion and manipulation were clearly the decisive factors” in the elections.
He accused Zanu-PF of vote buying, systematic intimidation and abuse of state resources.
“The people of Matabeleland North who voted for the MDC must be saluted for the resisting all the obstacles and going against all odds to support change in Zimbabwe,” Mafume said.
Maureen Kademaunga of the MDC national executive is of the opinion that the MDC had gained votes and reduced the margin of loss from the 2018 figures to the by-election figures.
Japhet Ndiweni a resident of Lupane said the residents of Lupane were fed up of the MDC and its activism without any real action to change people’s lives.
Nelson Chamisa addressed a campaign rally in Lupane which left a bittersweet taste in the ears of Lupane residents. While others hailed Chamisa for his spirited attempt at speaking IsiNdebele with a shona accent, others admired how he connected with the crowd and could relate to them, while others said his entire speech lacked substance and solutions specific to the Matebeleland region and Lupane in particular.
The MDC’s defeat comes against a backdrop of serious credibility and relevance problems bedevilling the MDC in Bulawayo. The MDC is troubled in Matebeleland and this will give rise to a new force of opposition in the region. The people of Matebeleland feel that the MDC no longer represents their interests and is now part of a conspiracy theory to disenfranchise the people of Matebeleland. This school of thought has been touted by Mthwakazi Republic Party MRP which did not fare well in the by-election.