By Obey Manayiti
A number of senior Zanu PF officials risk losing their parliamentary seats after they failed to avoid primary elections in their constituencies.
Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa, Information Communication Technology minister Supa Mandiwanzira, Matabeleland South Provincial Affairs minister Abedinico Ncube, former Transport minister Nicholas Goche and Sports minister Kazembe Kazembe are some of the senior ruling party officials that have to go through primary elections next Sunday
President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s advisor Chris Mutsvangwa faces a challenge from Langton Mutendendereya in Norton.
Scholarships minister Christopher Mushohwe is facing a challenge from six aspiring candidates in Mutare West. Local Government minister July Moyo has to contend with three candidates in the race for the Redcliff parliamentary seat.
Mashonaland Central Provincial Affairs minister Martin Dinha is being challenged by five other candidates in Mazowe North.
Former War Veterans minister Tshinga Dube will also have to brush aside the challenge of two candidates, including his former campaign manager Nothiwani Dlodlo for him to represent Zanu PF in Makokoba in the July elections.
Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa will contest against three candidates for Zvimba South while former Home Affairs minister Ignatius Chombo’s ex-wife Marian Chombo is contesting Zvimba North.
According to the list of people cleared to take part in the highly anticipated polls released by Zanu PF yesterday, several soldiers, police officers and journalists threw their hats in the ring for the primaries.
Zanu PF commissar retired lieutenant general Engelbert Rugeje told journalists that civil servants contesting the primaries would keep their jobs if they lost.
“We have also quite a number of civil servants, diplomats and members of other departments in government who showed interests in participating in the primaries,” he said.
“We didn’t restrict them as long as they provide ample evidence that they have been allowed to do so by their various departments.
“I am aware that there was talk that one had to resign first in terms of the constitution but we said one had to resign after succeeding in the primaries.”
The selection of Zanu PF candidates has been marred by allegations of underhand dealings and unfair treatment.