By George Maponga
The Zanu-PF leadership here has threatened to deal decisively with aspiring candidates who have started campaigning without the revolutionary party’s nod, as jostling for seats intensifies in the province ahead of this year’s harmonised elections.
Masvingo provincial chair Cde Ezra Chadzamira said aspiring candidates involved in premature campaigning would be disqualified to send a clear message on the need for party members to toe the line.
The warning by Cde Chadzamira was in response to complaints by party members, during a Zanu-PF provincial co-ordinating committee meeting over the weekend, over the high number of aspiring candidates who have already started campaigning across the province without getting the green light from the party leadership.
Cde Chadzamira said it was time action was taken against the culprits, saying the premature campaigns were affecting unity in the party in some areas.
“The issue of some candidates who have already started campaigning in some areas is a matter of serious concern to us and I think its high time we take action against one or two individuals as a lesson to other party members because we have made it clear that it is illegal for aspiring candidates to start campaigning without permission from the Zanu-PF leadership,” he said.
“I want to make it very clear that we will not hesitate to disqualify any aspiring candidate who from now going forward is fingered in premature campaigning. We are a party that is guided by rules and everyone should be bound by those rules.
“We will disqualify anyone who continues to campaign when the floor has not yet been opened.”
Cde Chadzamira said the ruling party leadership wanted unity in the party ahead of the forthcoming polls.
He decried the tendency by some aspiring candidates to abuse names of senior party leaders in their effort to win votes.
“There are some who are moving around soiling the names of senior party leaders and claiming that they have been authorised by them to campaign,” said Cde Chadzamira.
“Bring us proof of such individuals and we will not hesitate to take action against them.”
Cde Chadzamira said no individual was bigger than Zanu-PF and urged party cadres to stick to the rules and regulations of the party to avoid falling by the wayside.
He warned party members against continued retribution against alleged G40 cabal members and supporters, saying there was need to forgive each other and forge a new path while working in unison under the leadership of President Mnangagwa.
In his address at the meeting, Politburo member and Masvingo Provincial Affairs Minister Senator Josaya Hungwe also warned against retribution in the party, saying those who sympathised with the vanquished G40 cabal needed prayer.
Senator Hungwe said the biggest challenge facing the ruling party in Masvingo was mobilising more people to vote for President Mnangagwa and enable the Zanu-PF leader to romp to a crushing victory in the coming polls.
“If we vote and win the coming elections resoundingly then I can live the rest of my life in peace and satisfaction,” he said.
“We have a job to do, that is to campaign and make sure Zanu-PF and President Mnangagwa win the coming elections.”
Senator Hungwe took the opportunity to welcome Mines and Mining Development Minister Cde Winston Chitando and Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Amon Murwira who attended their inaugural PCC meeting.