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Philip Chiyangwa


Douglas Mombeshora

Douglas Mombeshora

BY NEWSANCHOR REPORTER
Controversial businessman-cum-politician, Philip Chiyangwa's premature celebrations were halted after his 'victory' to represent Zanu PF in Zvimba South constituency in the forthcoming 2018 harmonised general elections was nullified by the party's commissariat department. A re-run of voting has been ordered in the constituency after his rival contestants raised allegations of vote buying and rigging.
Chiyangwa, who had reportedly won in the internal polls despite earlier being booed during a campaign presentation, faces a stern challenge from Chrispen 'Kadoza' Saidi who was tipped to win the ballot.
The first round was characterised by flaws that saw most eligible voters failing to cast their ballots as their names did not appear on the party's cell registers.
Reports also suggest Chiyangwa had orchestrated a grand plan to disenfranchise Saidi's supporters from voting in supposed strongholds. There were rampant allegations the business tycoon and Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) president bought bicycles for branch chairpersons and had paid police details who acted as returning officers in the sham elections.
According to a petition that was presented to Zanu PF national political commissar, retired Lieutenant-General Englebert Rugeje, Chiyangwa bribed returning officers and directed branch chairpersons to remove names of people who were unlikely to cast votes in his favour.
At Maquadzi Primary School, violence broke out as voters bayed for the area chairperson's blood for allegedly hiding the cell register. He escaped by sneaking out through the window before Chiyangwa later reported the matter at Banket Police Station where he implicated his main rival Saidi for causing the mayhem.
At Kuwadzana Hall, an unnamed Officer-In-Charge who was presiding officer took the ballot box to the police station following a lengthy argument with some of the polling agents who were against the idea.
It is reported some of Chiyangwa's rival polling agents were later chased away from the police station as they were wanted to keep vigil throughout the night guarding the ballot box to avoid tempering with the votes.
Ironically, a victory party was reportedly held in Banket's Ward 23 branch at chairperson Peter Nizira's home whilst elections were still underway although Chiyangwa had reportedly lost by a huge margin in Banket before brewing a shocker at Strathdon Farm where it was reported he had garnered more than 500 votes. However, investigations by this paper showed that less than 350 people voted at the said polling station when it closed for business.
Saidi and other contestants, Sign Chabvonga, Zandile Maseko and Jessica Tapfumaneyi successfully lodged an appeal that resulted in the nullification of Chiyangwa's momentary triumph.
Meanwhile, former Lands minister Douglas Mombeshora, a key Mnangagwa ally, reportedly swept following his shocking defeat to local Mhangura entrepreneur, Precious Chinhamo Masango.
A visibly angry Mombeshora disputed the result before breaking down after a recount of the ballots confirmed he had lost. The former Cabinet minister claimed the police officers had made a mistake in counting before he ordered a re-count.
In Zvimba North voting is yet to take place.  The elections pit Marian Chombo, Idah Kamushinda and 14 other contestants who include top government bureaucrat Christopher Shumba, who was found in possession of an estimated 5 000 pre-voted ballots that led to violence breaking out in Raffingora leaving an unnamed Officer-In-Charge with injuries inflicted on him by angry youths.
In the Mafuta area, voting failed to take place after voters went on the rampage and destroyed ballot papers that were being transported to polling stations by Shumba, principal director in the Local Government ministry, whom they demanded be disqualified from the race.
The Zanu PF Politburo at the weekend ordered a re-run of the primaries in at least 10 constituencies across the country.-TOP NEWS.

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