TENSION between Zanu PF winning candidate Tendai Savanhu and losing candidate Emmanuel Mahachi has escalated ahead of the nomination court’s sitting on Thursday, raising fears that the ruling party could end up with two parliamentary candidates for the constituency.
Savanhu’s three supporters were seriously injured on Sunday after they clashed with Mahachi’s supporters during a send-off function for national hero John Chimbandi at Stodart Hall.
Zanu PF Harare provincial chairman Godwills Masimirembwa was allegedly also manhandled by suspected rowdy party youths after he ordered them to stop fighting.
The party said the assault victims were discharged from Harare Central Hospital and were referred to Harare Central Police Station’s Law and Order Section for counselling together with their rivals.
National police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi confirmed the intraparty violent clashes involved the two ruling party politicians.
Mbare Zanu PF activists claimed Savanhu rigged the party primary elections, a move that has angered Mahachi’s supporters.
They added that one of Savanhu’s supporters, Kudzai Dhumukwa, was arrested after running away with a ballot box in ward 4.
The case was recorded at Matapi Police Station under case number RRB No 34889033 and Dhumukwa paid an admission of guilty fine under receipt number Z69 (J) 1312908 B.
Zanu PF Harare provincial commissar Douglas Mahiya said the problem was not with the people of Mbare, but the party that failed to adhere to its rules and regulations in the conduct of the primary polls.
He said several losing candidates from all party provinces had complained over electoral irregularities in party primaries, but these had remained unresolved.
“The commission that ran the elections had publicly admitted it did not do well, but nothing has been done to correct it.
People should not be fighting if it was corrected.
A party should respect its own rules,” Mahiya said.