Movement for Democratic Change leader Morgan Tsvangirai descends on Bulawayo today where he is expected to address a “star” rally at the White City Stadium.
Bulawayo and the two provinces of Matabeleland will this year play a critical role in the presidential vote as three candidates- Tsvangirai himself, Dumiso Dabengwa and Welshman Ncube- consider them their strongholds and are contesting for president.
Tsvangirai won more than half of the votes in the 2008 presidential elections in Bulawayo polling 49 657 against Simba Makoni’s 35 510 and Mugabe’s 11 118.
With the alliance between Tsvangirai and Makoni, simple logic would dictate that this time it would be a walkover for Tsvangirai but in the 2008 elections Makoni had the backing of both Ncube and Dabengwa.
Tsvangirai failed to secure half the votes in Matebeleland North though he won the majority. He polled 70 611 against Makoni’s 35 895 and Mugabe’s 42 825.
He was beaten by Mugabe in Matebeleland South polling 34 885 against Mugabe’s 46 156 and Makoni’s 36 213.