Youths participation in primary elections commendable

HARARE - Confirmation by Zanu PF and MDC, the main political parties that the doors are open for youths to participate in their primary elections will send chills in the parties’ old guard.

In the past, bigwigs within the political parties were known to thwart any attempts by young party cadres to fight it out in primary elections to choose party representatives for Parliament.

The bigwigs who usually surface during election time will this time around have a rude awakening as the electorate, who they have always taken for a ride, chooses preferred candidates.

In most constituencies, the legislators once in power never visit their areas and most of the people who voted them into power do not even know them.

The trend in the past in which voters voted for legislators based on party patronage irrespective of the calibre of candidates, seems to be falling off this time around. The electorate wants those who failed to deliver to pave way for new blood.

Those legislators who abused the CDF will also find themselves being booted out as the electorate is angry at their abuse of community projects money.

But it is the open-door policy being advanced by political parties to bring in the youths as participants in the primary election that will be the climax of the whole election.

We hope there won’t be dirty campaigns at grassroots level as those already in power use their financial muscle and political influence to their advantage.

Dirty campaigns would be a recipe for disaster in internal party politics and events on the ground are already showing signs that the battle will be bitter and nasty.

Political parties have to safeguard their reputation, hence they must thwart any manoeuvres by those who might want to turn the primaries into battles.

The political parties should know that intra-party violence will divide their supporters and create groupings and factions that will be difficult to eliminate.

It might also destroy political party campaigns as there would be no trust among opposing members.

The electorate has to be wise this time around and choose candidates for their constituencies wisely.
We need to see those aspiring to be legislators coming up with sound campaigns in which they have to spell out what they would do if elected.

It is time that would be legislators be educated enough to comprehend issues of governance.

This time around Zimbabweans are wiser and they will not just vote a candidate because he or she belongs to a particular party. They will vote for a candidate who has a sound and working blue print for their constituencies and someone who will spend most of his or her time working for the people.

The calibre of legislators we had have always been busy fighting for their allowances and cars without giving much thought to the developments of constituencies they represent.

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