New Zimbabwe.com

Zanu PF candidates summoned to Harare as violence erupts in Mash East

ALL aspiring candidates in the coming ZANU PF primary elections for Marondera Central parliamentary and local council seats were on Thursday ordered to report to the party headquarters in Harare to resolve cases of violence and intimidation in the area.

The order from Zanu PF national commissar, Engelbert Rugeje, follows a report made to the police last week by one of the candidates for Ward 9 local council elections, Itai Mutandi.

He claimed to the police that he was abducted and assaulted by security aides of his rival, Paul Masikati the current councillor in the ward who seeks to retain the seat.

According to a report made to the police by Mutandi, Masikati is moving around with armed bodyguards who are intimidating rival Zanu PF supporters in the ward.

“On 16 April 2018, I was abducted and assaulted by six armed men travelling in a vehicle owned by Masikati,” part of the police report made by Mutandi reads.

Although no arrests have been made, concerns have also been raised in the town by other aspiring candidates over the increase in intra-party violence. The candidates claimed some aspiring politicians were ordering their campaign teams to also harass and intimidate their supporters.

“Every aspiring candidate from Marondera Central is in Harare right now as complaints have been raised by some of the candidates that their supporters are being harassed and intimidated. So, we are meeting Cde Rugeje,” one aspiring councillor confirmed.

He added that some candidates had also raised complaints with the national electorate directorate over issues of vote buying and favouritism by the Zanu PF Mashonaland East executive.

Three candidates, Lawrence Katsiru, Cleopas Kundishora and Lucas Chimoka are vying for the Marondera Central seat in the parliamentary primary elections.

Zanu PF is expected to hold its primary elections for all aspiring councillors and parliamentary candidates on 5 May across the country ahead of the harmonised elections also expected to be held in July this year.