Campaigns: Smaller crowds at MDC-T Mashonaland rally

AFTER attracting huge crowds in cities and towns like Mutare, Gweru, Marondera and Bulawayo, MDC-T leader Morgan Tsvangirai has failed to penetrate Zanu PF’s traditional stronghold, the three Mashonaland provinces, after a small crowd of not than 300 people turned up for his rally in Mudzi North.

Aaron Ufumeli

People trickled in at Kotwa growth point, the venue for the rally, amid claims by the MDC-T most of its supporters in Mudzi could not attend because of fear of reprisals.

Tsvangirai thanked his supporters, whom he said have been brave enough to attend the rally in spite of the intimidation.

“I know you have had a torrid time here over the years and have faced the brunt of Zanu PF so I want to thank you for being brave enough to attend this rally,” he said.

This is not the first time that Tsvangirai has had a poor turnout in Mashonaland provinces.

Just a fortnight ago, during his visit after a poor turnout at Rushinga business centre and a non-appearance at Matope centre in Mt Darwin, Tsvangirai said although intimidation and open political violence have declined, the fear factor is still lingering in the three Mashonaland provinces.

He said his supporters are still being intimidated and reminded of the horrors of the 2008 elections.

The Mashonaland provinces have denied Tsvangirai victory in previous elections by overwhelmingly voting for Zanu PF.