Africa-Press – Zimbabwe. The Citizens Coalition for Change (CCC) Masvingo City Councillors were threatened by the party’s director in the organising department, Farai Chinobva, for failing to attend the Ward 2 by-election campaign launch last weekend.
TellZim News reported that the launch was held at Gomba shopping centre in Runyararo West, to drum up support for recalled former Mayor Shantiel Chiwara.
It was attended by some local leaders and only one councillor, Bernard Muchokwa of Ward 9.
Speaking at the launch, Chinobva said councillors and the MP who failed to attend the events were loyal to CCC’s self-proclaimed Secretary General Sengezo Tshabangu. Said Chinobva:
Let me tell you this, the election has already been won, so what is left now is for you to go and work. However, there is something that I discovered here; I have seen that there are some who have been threatened with recalls and are now afraid to work for the party.
We have sellouts who prioritise being a councillor more than working for the party.
Chitando (Jeffreyson) called for the launch, and I have looked at the MPs and Councillors from this area; we know who is here and who is not.
Failure to come here means you have gone to Tshabangu; that is what it means, it’s clear.
You have been intimidated and cowed down, so you can keep your councillor post, but what I want to tell you is that Advocate Nelson Chamisa will get there soon.
He went on to declare that the CCC official candidate was Chiwara, and not another candidate Roki Kamuzonda, whom he said belonged to the Tshabangu faction. Said Chinobva:
My issue here is that I want you to know that we have an official candidate and Tshabangu’s candidate.
Our candidate is Shantiel Chiwara, and Tshabangu’s is Rocky. I don’t know his surname; maybe it’s Rocky Tshabangu.
What is critical is that the citizens are clever and they won’t go for Tshabangu; the election is not between Shantiel and other candidates but between Chamisa and Mnangagwa.
So if you lose this Ward, it’s Chamisa who has lost; that is why I have brought the president (Chamisa)’s poster.
Contacted for comment by TellZim on his remarks, Chinobva said failure to attend the launch was a personal decision.
He added that what he meant was that those who wanted to join Tshabangu were free to do so but as it stands they had no problems with any councillor. Chinobva said:
Failure by some councillors to attend the launch was their individual choice; some even sent apologies that they had gone to a funeral, church, and other commitments, so we don’t have any problems with our councillors.
However, what I meant that day was that those who wanted to join Tshabangu were free to do so.
Contacted for comment by TellZim on Chinobva’s utterances, the newly elected Masvingo Mayor and Ward 4 councillor Alec Tabe said he had other commitments.
However, Tabe’s deputy and Ward 5 Councillor Daniel Mberikunashe, and Ward 8 councillor and chief whip Richard Msekiwa slammed Chinobva saying they were fully behind Chiwara and won’t be lectured by someone from Harare, who is not even a politician.