Former Hurungwe West legislator Temba Mliswa, who was expelled from the Zimbabwe Africa National Union-Patriotic Front resulting in his seat being declared vacant, has lost his battle to have polls in the constituency postponed because of alleged intimidation of voters.
Mliswa, who is contesting the seat as an independent, wanted the poll postponed because he alleged that ZANU-PF Secretary for Administration Ignatius Chombo had enlisted the services of the army to instil fear in the villagers.
“These soldiers are moving around threatening people perceived to be loyal to me with assault and death if they continue supporting me or vote for me on the election day,” he was quoted as saying.
Justice Tendai Uchena, however, yesterday threw out his case because parties had not been given the required 10 days to respond to the allegations.
The by-election, together with 15 others, is being held today. Mliswa is contesting ZANU-PF’s Keith Guzah.
Mliswa is probably the only independent candidate who has received high profile coverage in the run-up to the by-elections largely because of his shenanigans which have involved several arrests.
Though he is linked to former Vice-President Joice Mujuru’s faction, there has been speculation that Mliswa wants to rejoin ZANU-PF if he wins the seat.
Jonathan Samkange, Munyaradzi Kereke and Jonathan Moyo have rejoined the ruling party after winning towheir seats as independents after misunderstandings with the party.