By Moses Matenga
The fight for the Zanu PF Mashonaland Central chairmanship has turned nasty, amid reports that the incumbent Kazembe Kazembe’s supporters have embarked on a smear campaign against James Makamba who is also eyeing the top post.
So dire is the tussle that provincial leaders allegedly almost traded blows during a recent meeting in Bindura over the matter.
Kazembe has been accused teaming up with politburo member Kenneth Musanhi to block Makamba from contesting for the provincial top post, labelling him a G40 member.
But Kazembe yesterday dismissed the allegations, saying those raising dust were afraid of losing elections.
“The people who are behind all the stories are the people who are scared of elections because they know the real situation on the ground,” he said.
“There is no individual who has the power to block anyone when the time comes. When elections are due, whenever they will be due, the commissariat will announce the dates and the criteria. Whoever meets the criteria will contest.
“The national elections directorate will have the final say on who qualifies. People who rush to the media are scared of reality. What’s also interesting is that those who are causing confusion in the province are the ones who rush to the media to drive a certain narrative.”
Kazembe said the people would have a final say on who would lead them when the time comes.
“In any case, we are not in any election at the moment. We are seized with the restructuring of cells and villages which we are finalising,” he said.
“Most importantly, we are busy preparing for the conference and all our committees are meeting regularly working towards a successful conference.”
Makamba said he had no problems with the executive as alleged and he was yet to submit his curriculum vitae.
“I am just hearing that I was barred from contesting, but surprisingly, I have not yet submitted my CV and I have no problem with the executive,” he said curtly.
Last week, Rushinga MP Tendai Nyabani accused his Shamva North counterpart Oscar Gorerino of trying to mobilise MPs in support of Kazembe and fighting one of the contestants interested for the chairmanship post.
In another incident, former Education minister Lazarus Dokora is also under fire from a youth official, Nickross Kajengo, reportedly aligned to the provincial chairman alleging he was promised a parliamentary seat if he campaigned against the incumbent.
Provincial leaders last week accused Kanjengo of using Kazembe’s name to insult his rivals.
The provincial elections are scheduled for August and Mashonaland Central is set to host the party’s national conference in October. NewsDay