HARARE – Christopher Mutonhori Rwodzi, a candidate who was barred from standing in Zanu PF primaries in Gutu West, Zimbabwe, has tragically died in a vehicle accident.
Rwodzi, a retired soldier and husband of tourism deputy minister Barbra Rwodzi, was traveling from Gutu to Harare when his Toyota Prado broke through side barriers of a bridge and fell into a dry riverbed, landing on its roof.
According to ZimLive, Rwodzi had decided to run as an independent candidate for the Gutu West National Assembly seat after being prevented from participating in the Zanu PF primaries due to alleged pending disciplinary issues. Despite running as an independent, his vehicle prominently displayed a picture of Zanu PF leader Emmerson Mnangagwa, and a sticker encouraged voters to support him.
The details of the accident and the cause have not yet been made available. The Masvingo Mirror reported that Rwodzi’s father confirmed the politician’s death at the scene of the accident.
Zanu PF’s primary elections in April led to internal divisions within the party, with losing candidates claiming that the elections were rigged in favor of certain candidates by an organization called Forever Associates of Zimbabwe (FAZ).
In response to the fallout, Zanu PF threatened to expel candidates who ran as independents after losing in the primaries.
General elections are scheduled to take place in Zimbabwe on August 23.