CHIREDZI-MDC Alliance national organising secretary Amos Chibaya last week blamed the party’s top leadership for the party’s loss in Chiredzi West during the harmonised elections last year, saying imposition of candidates which saw some disgruntled party members contesting in the national election as independents had cost the party dearly.
Chibaya addressed party supporters at Chiredzi Civic Centre grounds on Sunday last where he attacked some unnamed party leaders for manipulating the party’s primary elections last year to suit their personal ambitions, much to the detriment of unity in the district.
“We lost in Chiredzi West and you don’t have to blame yourselves on that but you can blame party leaders. When we visited Tshovani Stadium with President Nelson Chamisa, he ordered for a re-run (of the primaries) but that was not done,” said Chibaya.
Chiredzi West’s primary elections were chaotic resulting in many candidates contesting as independent candidates.
Simbarashe Baloyi and UK-based businessman John Manganye stood as independent candidates after Stanley Themba won during the chaotic primaries.
The parliamentary seat was later won by Farai Musikavanhu of Zanu PF who had prevailed in his party’s own chaotic primaries.
At the meeting, Chiredzi district chairperson James Kampota claimed that the opposition party’s Masvingo provincial chairperson James Gumbi was responsible for manipulating Chiredzi West structures.
“I personally presided over the formation of structures in Ward 3 and everything went well there. Later on, Chairman Gumbi called me and declared the structures null and void,” said Kampota.
Chibaya said those who supported independent candidates should not be barred from contesting for positions in the new structures that he said will be formed next week.
He however said those who contested as independents were not allowed to participate as they had technically expelled themselves from the party.
“We don’t see any reason why those who supported independent candidates must be barred from participating in structures. Only those who stood as independent candidates should appeal to my office stating why they stood as independent candidates and a committee will decide whether to admit them back into the party or not,” Chibaya said.
During a recent provincial caucus in Bulawayo ahead of the MDC Alliance congress, party’s secretary general Douglas Mwonzora blamed the double candidates debacle that the party suffered in many constituencies on the then national chairperson Morgan Komichi.