ZANU PF Bulawayo Province has endorsed President Mnangagwa as the sole candidate in next year’s harmonised national elections and as the party’s First Secretary and President ahead of its 7th Congress in October.
The congress will be held at the Robert Mugabe Square in Harare from 26 to 29 October.
The party held its Bulawayo provincial inter-district meeting on Wednesday at Davies Hall during which it endorsed President Mnangagwa’s candidature, among other resolutions.
Zanu PF Bulawayo provincial secretary for information and publicity Cde Archie Chiponda said the decision was unanimously adopted by the party’s provincial structures.
Cde Chiponda said the resolutions were among others to be taken aboard when thematic committees discuss a range of issues at the National People’s Congress.
The resolutions include the review of land levies and pegging of civil servants’ salaries above the poverty datum line.
“We resolved that the party, through the Government, provides a healthy working environment for the informal traders, and that vocational centres be revived and re-oriented,” he said.
“The party, through Government, to review examination fees to enable all students to write examinations. It was noted that the party’s constitution should be adhered to at all times and its provisions be strictly respected with no compromise.”
The province also agreed that all vetted war veterans should promptly get their remunerations and assist the elderly in its structures aged above 65 years to get monthly allowances for their upkeep.
“The party adopted the resolution that we should assist residents staying in derelict flats with proper accommodation facilities. The party through Government to intervene in the issues of title deeds for high density suburbs,” said Cde Chiponda.
“We resolved that disabled and vulnerable persons get first preference during input distribution and that corruption on the BEAM scheme be addressed promptly.”
On health issues, he said, it was partly resolved that all clinics should operate on 24-hour basis with maternity fees being reviewed while all disabled and disadvantaged children should get free education up to tertiary level.
On the land issue, the party adopted the resolution that land fees and levies be reviewed with each administrative district having commercial land for agricultural projects.
“We adopted the resolution that all farming inputs be distributed on time, 99-year leases be availed and the 40km radius Presidential declaration be implemented,” said Cde Chiponda.
Other resolutions are that the party should be more visible in civic space while the PVO Bill should be fast tracked to check on NGOs operations. The party also agreed that candidature for parliamentary and council positions should be occupied by the same individual not more than twice.
It was also agreed that the party should come up with a sub-committee to monitor the implementation of Government projects with an employment quota in parastatals.
The party province adopted the resolution for the establishment of Zanu PF’s own television station to broadcast its programmes. The resolutions were read before all the wings comprising the main wing, war veterans of the liberation struggle, women’s and youth league.
The party’s provincial chairperson for Matabeleland South, Cde Mangaliso Ndlovu, said they have already taken a position to confirm President Mnangagwa’s candidature although the provincial structures are yet to meet.
“We have already taken a position to endorse President Mnangagwa as the sole candidate in the 2023 harmonised elections and the party’s First Secretary and President ahead of our 7th Congress in October. However, the provincial inter-district meeting will come up with the resolution,” he said.
Zanu PF Matabeleland North chairman Cde Richard Moyo said they are yet to meet as a province.
The Congress will draw delegates from the Central Committee members, National Consultative Assembly, Women’s League national executive, Youth league executive members, National Council of the War Veterans League and provincial executive members.
District Co-ordinating Committee executives and one district executive chairperson from each party district drawn from either the main body, Women’s League, Youth League or War Veterans League will be attending.
The party constitution demands an ordinary Congress once every five years.
The 7th National People’s Congress will elect the President and First Secretary of the party who will represent the party as the presidential candidate for the 2023 harmonised elections. It will also elect Central Committee members, among other issues.
Meanwhile, the move by Bulawayo province has been interpreted as a calculated move to frustrate Vice President Constantino Chiwenga who is strongly believed to be highly ambitious and gunning for the top job.
Mnangagwa is locked in a cut-throat battle with Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga over the party’s unresolved leadership issue following the toppling of the late former president Robert Mugabe.
Inside sources said after Mnangagwa reneged on the deal with Chiwenga prior to the November 2017 military coup that ousted the late former president Robert Mugabe to serve only one term and allow his deputy to come in 2023, gloves are now off within the ruling party over unresolved leadership issues.
“The fallout within the party leadership is serious. We are heading for battle royale between Mnangagwa and Chiwenga ahead of congress,” a source said.
“That is how politics within Zanu PF and state institutions is currently shaping up. The unresolved leadership question can no longer be managed and swept under the carpet; it has got to be settled politically, and that means through congress.”
The source added: “When Mnangagwa took over, there was a clear understanding that he will not seek re-election in 2023. However, Chiwenga and others were shocked to see him telling the world in an interview in September 2018 during the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly in New York that he would seek re-election in 2023. That was never agreed.”
After that, Mnangagwa and his allies moved a gear up and launched a campaign during the December 2018 Zanu PF conference at Mzingwane High School in Esigodini for him to serve two terms.
“At that time, it became clear Mnangagwa had broken ranks and reneged on the deal,” another source said.