The leader of the opposition Zimbabwe Republicans Front (ZRF) party has endorsed President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s re-election bid and predicted a resounding victory for the Zanu PF candidate in the upcoming elections.
ZRF president Fanuel Lisenga told a press conference in Bulawayo on Friday that President Mnangagwa will win the August elections by a large margin, citing Zanu PF’s strong support in rural areas.
Lisenga said he consulted ZRF’s provincial leaders who voted to back Mnangagwa’s candidacy. He said Mnangagwa’s experience, development agenda and infrastructure projects in the past five years justified supporting his re-election bid.
“President Mnangagwa has a clear development agenda. We predict a resounding victory for him based on what we see on the ground,” Lisenga said.
He argued that opposition parties only have support in towns while Zanu PF enjoys tremendous backing in rural areas. He claimed many opposition candidates did not field candidates in recent ward nominations, indicating people want Mnangagwa.
Lisenga urged Zimbabweans to vote for Zanu PF to continue the development momentum, saying in a sanctions-free environment, Mnangagwa can deliver effectively.
Zanu PF launched its 2023 election campaign on Monday after completing more than 7,000 projects across the country in the past five years. Credit rating agency Fitch Solutions has also predicted a Zanu PF victory in the polls.
However, critics argue Mnangagwa has failed to turn around the ailing economy and solve Zimbabwe’s deep-rooted problems despite promises of reform and opening up the political space.
In endorsing Mnangagwa, Lisenga and the ZRF join a growing list of smaller opposition parties backing the Zanu PF candidate for the upcoming harmonised elections.