THE controversial weekend by-elections were significant for two main things: They gave the ruling Zanu PF a two-thirds parliamentary and a return to Bulawayo from rural exile.
The polls brought back Zanu PF in Bulawayo with more than one seat for the first time since 2000 — courtesy of opposition activist Sengezo Tshabangu who caused the polls through recalls of popularly elected MPs and other people’s representatives.
Zanu PF, now a rural party since 2000 due to its political and economic governance failures, had been wiped out of Bulawayo in the August general elections.
Prior to that, Zanu PF had one seat in the city — Bulawayo South. Now Zanu PF is back with three seats handed over to them by Tshabangu.
In Harare, Tshabangu also handed over Mabvuku-Tafara to Zanu PF, further exposing what his real agenda is.
Initially acting out of blind rage and vindictivenesss over the issue of candidates imposition, Tshabangu is clearly now working with Zanu PF, government and state security forces, as well as bitter individuals to help the ruling party get a two-thirds majority via the back door to change the constitution as they wish.
In total, Zanu PF got seven new more seats after the Tshabangu fiasco. Zanu PF added Beitbridge West, Nketa, Cowdray Park, Bulawayo South, Lupane, Binga North and Mabvuku-Tafara to their tally, securing a two-thirds parliamentary majority. The new Zanu PF MPs are: *Thusani Ndou (Beitbridge); *Arthur Mujeyi (Cowdray Park, Bulawayo); *Albert Mavhunga (Nketa, Bulawayo); *Raj Modi (Bulawayo South); *Pathisiwe Machangu (Lupane); *Muchimba Chineka (Binga North); and *Pedzai Scott Sakupwanya (Mabvuku-Tafara).
Tshabangu’s CCC faction won in Lobengula-Magwegwe (Tendai Nyathi Chitura) and Mpopoma-Mzilikazi (Charles Moyo). In the end, Zanu PF benefitted more, while CCC was barred from contesting. Democracy was the biggest loser.
As critical lessons drawn from by-elections begin to emerge and be publicly interpreted meaningfully to shed insight into recent political events, the controversial polls completely exposed posturing activist Tshabangu’s fallacies and wilful falsehoods that he represents the interests of the people sidelined in the main opposition CCC led by Nelson Chamisa.
One constituency particularly showed that Tshabangu was completely out of touch with reality and has been lying to the people about his real agenda.
In Cowdray Park, Bulawayo, all candidates that Tshabangu — who is unelectable himself — fielded claiming they were from the people and were sidelined, lost heavily in the election that was not even competitive in the absence of arbitrarily recalled and disqualified CCC candidates who always win in towns.
Courtesy of Tshabangu, now Cowdray Park constituency has ended up in the hands of Zanu PF under Mujeyi. Tshabangu removed the CCC’s popular MP Pashor Raphael Sibanda from the constituency.
Sibanda defeated Finance minister Mthuli Ncube in the August general elections. What transpired in Cowdray Park has simply benefitted Zanu PF, while robbing CCC and undermining democracy – thanks to Tshabangu and his opportunistic handlers.
To further demonstrate that Tshabangu has no support among the people, councillor Nkosinathi Hove-Mpofu who was recalled has been re-elected by the residents of Ward 6 in Cowdray Park.
People know who they want.
Tshabangu’s agenda is not to fix main opposition CCC internal democracy problems — which are there — but to help Zanu PF get a two-thirds parliamentary majority to change the constitution as they wish for their own political ends, and then name the price himself for personal benefit.