By Staff Reporter
EXILED former Higher and Tertiary Education Minister Jonathan Moyo has warned of “trouble ahead” of the MDC’s attempts to maintain its Bulawayo stronghold support after the main opposition surrendered one of its council seats to Zanu PF during a weekend council by-election.
Zanu PF’s Kidwell Mujuru snatched the seat from MDC after squabbling MDC camps defiantly fielded two candidates to compete for the right to represent a ward that was won by Happison Ncube, who died in December last year.
Mujuru polled 1 899 against MDC Alliance’s Collet Ndhlovu who got 221 votes with Mloyi Nomagugu, another MDC Alliance candidate polling 1 229. The combined MDC vote from its two candidates was 1 450.
In the 2018 harmonised elections, the MDC Alliance’s sole candidate polled 8 514.
The total 1 450 polled during the by-election is a big drop in terms of election support for the party.
Among those who were quick to raise the red flag were former Zanu PF legislator, Moyo who said on twitter that it was time the opposition introspected on some of its fatal decisions.
“It means that the MDC has disconnected with Bulawayo voters. Time was when per every three registered voters in Bulawayo, two were MDC. The writing is on the wall: If the MDC ALLIANCE leadership does not introspect on this, and reconnect with Bulawayo voters, trouble lies ahead!” Moyo said.
Former Education Minister and top MDC politician David Coltart also took time to caution his colleagues over their costly decisions.
“There are some serious lessons the #MDC Alliance needs to learn from this. ZANU PF will always mobilize their core support and rigidly impose one candidate. Once again we are back to minority rule in this ward in which the majority detest ZANUPF,” Coltart said.
It is not the first time Zanu PF has profited from the MDC’s internal fissures.
In 2014, MDC ordered parliament’s expulsion of party MPs who had ditched the main opposition to form a splinter group.
Both the main wing MDC and its rebels went on to boycott subsequent by-elections, allowing Zanu PF to contest and win seats in an area regarded an opposition fortress.