Mliswa canvasses opposition support

HARARE - Former Zanu PF Mashonaland West chairperson Temba Mliswa is leaving no stone unturned in his bid to get one over the ruling party in the forthcoming Norton by-elections where he will contest as an independent candidate.

The fiery former Hurungwe West MP is canvassing for support from pro-democracy and opposition groups in his bid to win the by-election caused by the expulsion of Christopher Mutsvangwa from Zanu PF.

Mliswa’s bid has been boosted by the war veterans who are putting their lot with him as they seek to soften the blow of having their chairman — Mutsvangwa —removed from the constituency he won in the 2013 elections.

“I think this gives us an opportunity to test the system to see how far they have complied with the Constitution of the country regarding elections,” Mliswa told the Daily News of his participation.

“That is why I am calling on all parties, the MDC, PDP, ZPF and others calling for a coalition to show that they really mean it by also supporting independent candidates.”

The MDC has been boycotting by-elections insisting that government must align laws with the new Constitution to allow electoral reforms which they say would even the playing field.

Since losing the 2013 elections which were marred by allegations of ballot cheating, the MDC has stayed away from elections — including contesting in the by-elections it caused by recalling its MPs in 2014.

But Mliswa said it was important that the electoral system was tested before the much-anticipated 2018 elections which most opposition parties will likely contest.

“It (the election) is important in the sense that a victory for me will send a message throughout the country that Zanu PF is finished and will embolden the electorate ahead of 2018,” said Mliswa.

“A soccer team cannot say it is preparing to play in the World Cup while at the same time it refuses to play in a friendly match arguing that the opponent uses foul tactics. You need to give it a go so that you get yourself well prepared for the final battle.

“That is why I am calling upon even civic groups, the Tajamukas to also campaign for me. It is the beginning of working together as progressive groups,” he added.

Mliswa was expelled from Zanu PF in 2014 on allegations of receiving funding from the United Sates and was among the 12 officials who were disparagingly referred to as the ‘‘Dirty Dozen’’ in what would turn out to be a well-calculated Zanu PF move to purge officials linked to former Vice President Joice Mujuru.

The bellicose Mliswa participated in the Hurungwe West by-election in 2015 where he polled a commendable 4 239 votes against Zanu PF’s Keith Guzah’s 5 961 amid violence and massive intimidation by security agents.

Mliswa who now leads the Youth Advocacy for Reform and Democracy (Yard) is on record for calling on the opposition parties to unite.

Comments (6)

maby-elections haana dhiri.

chomunhu phillip - 18 August 2016

This one is yours Temba. The situation on the ground has done the campaigning for you.

Tshemareza - 18 August 2016

Hamheno kana paine munhu chaiye anovhotera Zanu pf, kunze kwevanodya nayo nevana vawo.

Gamba Jena - 18 August 2016

Will be watching this one. The result will reflect the power(less/full)ness of the estranged war vets.

Dlodlo - 18 August 2016

Temba is right, let us all support democratic forces against the ZANU tyranny. Vanhu vese kunovhota. Dont be treatened by the army and CIO.

Pamberi nekuVhota - 18 August 2016

I am convinced that all opposition will test Zanupf on this one as well as the reforms needed according to the new constitution. The back borne of Zanupf is now Jonah Moyo, Kasukuwere, Grace, Gina Chombo all mafikizolos without own political lastre. Of cause backed by the military and other security agents. Povo nada, they dont have. it all depends on how fear will play in the minds of the voters and how much nikuvu tactics will be allowed to add up to people,s fear. Free and fair elections are a great worry for Zanupf. Honestly we are in for very interesting times. Where are the polesters who usually do polls to test the political Terain? In US, Hilary is said to be 49% and Donald 37%. What about in Zim, what do the polls say? ZETSN muripi?

zviyo - 18 August 2016

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