Masvingo Urban Member of Parliament (MP), Jacob Nyokanhete has used his own personal resources amounting to $2 000 to pay 220 election agents who worked for the MDC Alliance in the July 30 harmonised election.
Each ward in the constituency had 22 election agents protecting the presidential, parliamentary and local government votes.
The youthful MP said at a time when other parties were letting down their election agents, he deemed it fit to reward the people who worked hard to protect the party’s vote against possible rigging.
"I appreciate our hardworking election agents. They guarded our votes and Zanu PF failed to steal Masvingo Urban votes. If l afforded, I would have paid them even more," said Nyokanhete.
In Masvingo Urban, Nelson Chamisa got over 23 000 votes against Emmerson Mnangagwa’s 11 000, with Nyokanhete getting 17 000 votes against closest rival; Zanu PF candidate Benjaman Mazarire’s 12 500.
In the run up to the elections, Nyokanhete slaughtered a beast to feed the election agents and also gave each ward 20kg mealie meal, cooking oil, vegetables and other food stuffs.
The party’s then sitting councillors and council candidates also contributed different foodstuffs to feed election agents.
“I am pleased by the hard work done by our election agents and all our council candidates. We all have a close working relationship and that helped us to increase our councillors from six in the previous council to the current seven,” said Nyokanhete.
He said he will continue to work closely with councillors to make sure the city continues to improve service delivery.
“We won in Masvingo Urban and we must therefore deliver. We thank the previous council led by Cllr Hubert Fidze for being named the best-run municipality at our party’s 19th anniversary at Gwanzura,” said Nyokanhete.
He said the party’s Masvingo Urban district was embarking on ward-based ‘Thank You’ meetings to thank the people for entrusting their votes with the MDC Alliance.
“Our district chairperson Murangamwa Chanyau is leading the meetings for the purposes of showing our supporters that we are still together. We appreciate the support that they gave the party in the elections. The party district also won an award as the best performing district in the province,” he said.
Nyokanhete, who is a chartered accountant by profession, now sits on two parliamentary portfolio committees; Public Accounts as well as Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).
Commenting on the appointments, Masvingo provincial chairperson James Gumbi said it was remarkable that the party’s only MP in the province had some skills to offer.
“We appreciate the commitment that Honourable Jacob Nyokanhete has shown and we also thank our president Nelson Chamisa for appointing him to two parliamentary portfolio committees,” said Gumbi.
The ‘Thank You’ meetings started in wards 1 and 2 and they will soon proceed to ward 3 and 4 going forward.
In his remarks, Chanyau said the meetings were important in that they helped the leadership to remain in touch with the community.
"The meetings will be held in all the 10 wards and we want the people to see that they have hands-on leaders. The meetings are also a build up to a big ‘Thank You’ rally that will be addressed by president Nelson Chamisa in Mucheke Stadium on a date to be announced,” said Chanyau.