ZANU PF Mashonaland Central chairperson Dickson Mafios said party structures in the province are in shambles and urgent interventions are needed for it to avoid an embarrassing defeat in the next elections.
Report by Elias Mambo
Mafios told the Zimbabwe Independent on the sidelines of President Robert Mugabe’s 89th birthday celebrations at Chipadze Stadium in Bindura on Saturday that the province faced multiple problems ranging from the imposition of candidates, selling of farms to undesignated individuals as well as the push for the reversal of the indigenisation programme by some party officials.
Mafios said Zanu PF may not win elections in the province if problems concerning land reforms are not resolved because rampant evictions are currently taking place.
“Our concern is that there are corrupt leaders who have decided to evict people with offer letters,” said Mafios. “This has to stop and be resolved because it will cost the party in the next election. Some senior party officials come and lie to us saying they have been sent by the president yet they will be pushing their own agendas,” he said.
Sources say there are three centres of power in the province fighting to control the selection of candidates to represent the party in the elections.
“Vice-President Joice Mujuru’s camp has a list of its own candidates, while Defence minister Emmerson Mnangagwa’s group is alleged to have its own representatives and the third is led by , who is linked to Indigenisation minister Saviour Kasukuwere, and it seeks to retain its turf in the province,” said one source.
The sources also said primary elections in the province would be hotly contested as jostling for seats is intense since rival factions are battling for control.
In his main address, Mugabe also indicated that party structures in the Zanu PF stronghold are indeed in shambles and something has to be done.
“We have always been proud of this province because it has been united but we saw it developing loopholes which allowed the enemy to penetrate. We do not want to lose seats again,” Mugabe said.
Mashonaland Central governor Martin Dinha refuted allegations of candidate imposition and corruption in his province.
“The province is united as shown by the successful hosting of the president’s birthday celebrations,” Dinha said.
“We might have some minor differences but that will not make us lose our focus on the forthcoming elections.”