By Staff Reporter
MUTASA CENTRAL – The MDC’s victory in the just ended Mutare Central Ward 10 by election is a clear indication that local people have lost confidence in the ruling party and are determined to see political change, an opposition party official has said.
MDC Manicaland provincial spokesperson, David Panganayi said the victory came despite the ruling Zanu PF party using food aid to campaign.
He was speaking in an interview with newzimbabwe.com after the opposition swept to victory in the Mutasa Central Ward 10 by-elections on Saturday.
The MDC’s candidate Rose Tanyaradzwa Mukodza polled 801 votes against Zanu PF`s Margaret Tindirika who garnered 548. The Lovemore Madhuku led National Constitutional Assembly (NCA)’s candidate Tanyaradzwa Chirimo polled a paltry 16 votes.
The seat fell vacant following the arrest and subsequent conviction of the then councilor Frank Chitembwe for his alleged involvement in the January protests.
He was caged three years by a local magistrate but has appealed both conviction and sentence.
“As a party we delighted to retain the ward despite challenges faced during the run-up to the election. We salute the people of Mutasa Ward 10 for remaining resolute in the face of serious intimidation and vote buying by the ruling party.
“Food was being distributed metres from our campaigning venue and intimidation was widespread but our supporters remained resolute,” said Panganayi.
He said the Mutasa Ward 10 victory was a present for the new provincial executive which was elected at the just ended provincial congress which saw Dangamvura-Chikanga legislator Prosper Mutseyami taking over from David Chimhini as the chairperson.
“We also thank efforts by Mutasa Central legislator Trevor Saruwaka and our chairperson Mutseyami for their maximum effort in ensuring that the party retains the seat from little resources availed,” said the party spokesperson.