Nominations to fill six national assembly seats left vacant after self-proclaimed interim secretary general Sengezo Tshabangu showed that the party was indeed divided after half the candidates filed as independents and others as CCC, a move that is likely to see them disqualified as the High Court ruled recently that those recalled cannot contest the poll as CCC candidates.
Even those not recalled are refusing to withdraw from Parliament and they seem to have the support of leading CCC supporters who say it is better to fight from within than to leave.
Those who were recalled but filed their papers as CCC yesterday include deputy spokesman Gift Ostallos Siziva for Pelandaba-Tshabalala and Stephen Chatiza for Goromonzi South.
Reports say Amos Chibaya, currently Chamisa’s point man and just before his recall the official leader of the opposition in Parliament, is reported to have had two sets of nomination papers one signed by the Tshabangu faction and other by the Chamisa faction but tendered those from the Chamisa faction. He is therefore the sole CCC candidate for the Mkoba North Constituency.
Former Higher Education Minister Jonathan Moyo, who is under fire from Chamisa followers for constantly pointing out the short-comings of the party, says “the case of Amos Chibaya in Mkoba North is surrounded by huge controversy after it emerged last night that he got two sets of nomination papers, one countersigned by Sengezo Tshabangu and another by Chamisa’s party to ensure that he was the sole CCC candidate; effectively duping Tshabangu”.
He adds: “If this is indeed the case, as it in fact appears to be, then Chibaya might as well kiss his fraudulent nomination goodbye.”
Moyo also said that Chamisa’s candidates are in a catch-22 because even if they contest as independent candidates they can be recalled if they are seen to be aligned to Chamisa.
“if they file their nomination papers as independents today and the Chamisa party campaigns for them as its members, and they win the by-elections on 3 February 2024 and align themselves with the Chamisa party, they will be recalled in terms of section 129 (1) (l) of the Constitution of Zimbabwe,” Moyo opined.
In the debate that followed, some followers asked who would recall them. Tino Chinyoka, a lawyer sympathetic to the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front said anyone can recall them.
“Any member of the public can recall them,” Chinyoka said. “Any behaviour indicative of having joined a political party and a lack of independence and any member of the public can have them recalled.”
The by-elections are scheduled for 3 February.
Moyo stood as an independent candidate in 2005 and 2008 after falling out with the ZANU-PF leadership and won in both cases. He rejoined ZANU-PF in 2009.
Below is the list of the parliamentary by-election candidates nominated yesterday:
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