CHIREDZI – Zanu PF and the Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) political parties are readying their councilors who will battle for the Town Council chairperson post, with a lot of scheming underway as the two parties have equal number of councilors.
Out of the eight wards in the local authority, CCC won five and Zanu PF got three. However, Zanu PF managed to equalize with two more who got in through women’s quota after CCC failed to file nominations.
Just like in 2018, Chiredzi Town Council Chairperson selection process where the MDC Alliance got more votes whilst they were fewer than Zanu PF councilors, this year’s selection process is going to be equally interesting.
Zanu PF is alleged to have deployed its provincial top brass to Chiredzi to make sure that the elected councilors toe the line to avoid the 2018 scenario where MDC won the post with few councilors, a development which nearly cost some councilors their seats after being alleged to have voted in favor of the opposition.
Provincial Chairperson, Robson Mavhenyengwa and Politburo Member, Lovemore Matuke descended on Chiredzi to put the house to order ahead of the elections set for Tuesday September 19.
Liberty Macharaga and Jameson Charumbira were alleged to be main contenders before the visit which is said to have resolved to second Vimbai Ushe, who was elected through the women quota system in order to solve the impasse.
“It was going to be disaster as both Macharaga and Charumbira were vying for the post. In order to avert the 2018 situation, the party’s big wigs had to intervene and resolve to second Vimbai Ushe for the post,” said a source who refused to be named.
Vimbai Ushe was allegedly handpicked for the women quota position by Francis Moyo, together with his wife’s sister, Sekai Njanjure when he was trying to build his empire in the town.
On the other side, Roger Chikonye, Danford Chikanyau and Gift Chigidi are said to be eyeing the post.
Sources however, said Chikonye, who was Finance committee Chairperson in the previous council stood a better chance for the post as he is more senior and well versed with issues that needed immediate attention.
In an interview with former Vice chairperson who is now Chiredzi Central Member of Parliament Ropafadzo Makumire, he said the party always has its position regarding who should be chair.
“The party will have its position and the councilors will be made aware of who should be voted for the position,” said Makumire.
For Chiredzi Rural District Council, Aspect Mashingaidze seems to be the most influential and preferred candidate, with the new comer Wellington Mudzimiri trying his luck as well.
Vice Chairperson of the previous council, Leonard Makondo is also vying for the post with Chiredzi South legislator Joey Sithole having his back.
In 2018, out of eight wards, Zanu PF won four seats, Ward 2,4,5 and 8 whilst MDC Alliance got three, wards 1,6 and 7 with the remaining being won by an independent candidate.