EDITORIAL COMMENT: Bikita West by-election exposed Mujuru

Joice Mujuru

Joice Mujuru

THE emphatic victory by Zanu-PF in the Bikita West by-election at the weekend is significant in many ways in serving as an indicator of the outcome of the 2018 harmonised elections.

Particularly, the by-election has all but sealed the fate of Dr Joice Mujuru and her Zimbabwe People First party whose candidate suffered an embarrassing defeat.

The ruling party candidate Cde Beauty Chabaya romped to victory polling 13 156 votes trouncing Mr Kudakwashe Gopo of ZimPF who polled a paltry 2 453 votes. Independent candidate Mr Innocent Muzvimbiri polled 725 votes while Mr Madock Chivasa (NCA) got 343 votes and Mr Terrence Tanyaradzwa Makomborero (PDZ) received 132 votes. Former MDC-T legislator for the area Mr Heya Shoko, touted as the MDC-T’s proxy candidate, got a paltry 76 votes.

This was Dr Mujuru’s first electoral contest outside Zanu-PF following her 2014 expulsion from the ruling party over allegations of plotting to topple President Mugabe. The result has shown her that it’s cold outside Zanu-PF.

Not only is it cold for Dr Mujuru but the elections confirmed that her ZimPF project has suffered a still birth before it even holds a congress to elect substantive portfolio holders, delayed by internal fighting and growing divisions.

In the eyes of anti-coalition elements within MDC-T, the loss disempowers her in terms of negotiations on the terms of the merger ahead of the 2018 elections. The MDC-T, we are told, as a show of power (real or imagined) refused to hold a joint rally with ZimPF in the run-up to the Bikita West by-election to gauge the capacity of Dr Mujuru’s party.

More importantly, the Bikita West election result exposed the false claims by armchair analysts when Dr Mujuru decided to join opposition politics that ZimPF will eat into the Zanu-PF support base.

Even some excitable Western regime change organisations had also entertained this lie.

To the contrary, Cde Chabaya’s numbers are more than double those posted by Munyaradzi Kereke in the 2013 harmonised elections in a constituency where another Zanu-PF candidate, Cde Elias Musakwa, also contested. Both candidates polled about 6 000 votes each, only separated by a small margin.

In fact, Cde Chabaya polled more votes than Kereke and Cde Musakwa combined in 2013 showing that Zanu-PF is not only unshaken by the entry of Dr Mujuru into opposition politics but is actually getting more voters. Naturally, Zanu-PF is happy about the result following a misstep in the Norton by-election late last year won by independent candidate Mr Temba Mliswa.

The party’s secretary for administration said that opposition parties stand no chance against Zanu-PF in the 2018 elections but emphasised on the need for unity and service delivery among party cadres.

“We are happy we won by such a wide margin,” he said. “This is a clear statement to all other political parties that come 2018, they are going to be thrashed like prodigal children in this political contest.

“We commend the commissariat, Masvingo leadership and voters for coming out with that colossal victory and believing in our party. We should not relax for us to post wider margins than this next year.”

Cde Chombo called on the revolutionary party to shun petty fights.

“The main reason why political parties exist is to win elections,” he said. “We should focus on how to win elections and not to expend our energies on personal differences. We want to focus on what really unites us. This has been proven in Bikita that when people are going in one direction, it is easier to win.”

We maintain that Zanu-PF faces no credible threat ahead of the 2018 polls if cadres heed President Mugabe’s calls for unity and cohesion. There are political parties that are not Zanu-PF but in real terms the ruling party faces no competition next year.

It has been said that Dr Mujuru, is at best, a creation of her late husband Solomon Mujuru and a beneficiary of President Mugabe’s benevolence. Sadly, however, Dr Mujuru has learnt nothing from serving under the wings of one of Africa’s greatest political icons.

In the absence of the shed provided by President Mugabe from her teenage years, Dr Mujuru’s political life will continue to wilt as ignited by the Bikita West by-election.

The real Dr Mujuru, not the famed helicopter-felling Teurai Ropa based on false accounts of the liberation war by her sidekicks in an attempt to defraud history, has been exposed by the Bikita West poll.

She is just an ordinary woman, drunk by limitless delusions of filling shoes way bigger than her tiny feet, shoes of President Mugabe, in the process ignoring her glaring shortcomings.

With divisions rocking her party, it has become clear that leading a political party is different from leading a faction, the infamous Gamatox. Put simply, Dr Mujuru does not possess any credible leadership qualities or rather she is no leader.

While they collectively dreamt of ascending to power within Zanu-PF, they still enjoyed the shed of the leader they so wanted to replace and the legacy of a party that brought Independence from colonial bondage.

Now they bark from outside the walls of the revolutionary party, far away from the corridors of power, two places they will always talk about in retrospect.

Many have spoken about how cold it is outside Zanu-PF but Dr Mujuru stands as testimony of that fact, Bikita West has all but sealed her fate in the Zimbabwe political theatre.

Article Source: The Chronicle