THE weekend by-election results turned out to be what Vice-President Dr Constantino Chiwenga had predicted would be like manna from Heaven, as the ruling ZANU PF snatched seven of the nine House of Assembly seats from the opposition CCC.
This was after a faction of the embattled CCC’s recalled legislators had lost their battle to participate in the by-elections after the court granted an application by secretary-general, Sengezo Tshabangu to bar them from participation on the CCC card.
For a party with so many lawyers, Fadzayi Mahere included, it is puzzling why they could still field recalled members under the banner of a party they ceased to be members.
Anyway, the writing was already on the wall as the CCC leader and his supporters were busy campaigning against CCC candidates endorsed by Tshabangu.
While Scott Sakupwanya had a walkover in Mabvuku-Tafara, the other six once safe CCC seats were captured by ZANU PF.
Though, as usual in most by-elections, the voter turnout was generally low, there were pointers which spell doom for CCC.
The large totals for Binga North and Lupane East ZANU PF candidates must be enough to make the CCC feel very uncomfortable.
That is if they still have the intention to contest in the 2028 polls.
This trend can even be traced back to a recent Chinhoyi by-election where CCC lost a council seat it had won four months earlier to ZANU PF.
ZANU PF organisational prowess was once again on display as the revolutionary Party campaigned in the by-elections. The Party never left anything to chance as its heavyweights led the campaign teams in mobilising voters. Its ‘Nyika inovakwa nevene vayo’ mantra was still very fresh and visible just four months after the August general elections.
It looks like it was possible to persuade voters that they had made a ‘mistake’ a few months back if we are to go by the by-election results.
But why this sudden dip in popularity for the CCC?
The American-backed political outfit causes for decline are self-inflicted.
We warned earlier on that Nelson Chamisa’s CCC Wapusa Wapusa structureless political party will one day come to haunt him.
The day has already come.
Chamisa used his dictatorial powers, you may like to call it divine right, to handpick candidates for the August 23 general elections.
Some of these have been deemed to be no longer bona fide party members.
These have been recalled from Parliament by the party’s SG, Tshangu.
The Chamisa/Tshabangu schism created by the recalls has seen internecine bloodletting within the Western-sponsored political outfit. As the nation prepared for by-elections, the opposing factions were at each others’ throats.
Only the courts were able to settle their disputes.
The net effect on the supporters has been devastating.
Some disorientated supporters decided not to vote at all, with some opting to cross the floor and vote ZANU PF.
Where both fielded candidates in the same constituency, they expended their energies pulling each other down. CCC Bulawayo Mayor, David Coltart, even canvassed for ZAPU on voting day, as a way of fixing CCC Tshabangu candidates. Chaos is reigning supreme in the Western-backed party, whose key guiding principle is strategic ambiguity.
Some are calling for immediate withdrawal from Parliament and urban Councils, some want Chamisa replaced, while others want a congress and some want the party just to wait and see.
No-one seems to be having a solution as they all seem to be running like headless chickens.
Time will tell.
Meanwhile the seven who have replaced the CCC MPs must know they are in Parliament because of the voters.
They must listen to their constituencies’ wishes and represent them in Parliament. They must not be like CCC MPs who, like their leaders, are obsessed with a nightmarish fear of seeing the Constitution changed.
If that’s the case then it looks like more manna from Heaven awaits ZANU PF on February 3 2024!