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    Saturday, 21 January 2017

    2018 stampede for seats begins



    9 powerful candidates vie for Masvingo Urban

    NKULUMANI MLAMBO
    EDITOR

    MASVINGO – It is January 2017 and Zimbabwe has entered the home stretch for the watershed 2018 harmonised elections which must be held inside the next 18 months, according to the Constitution.
    Nine powerful candidates are vying for the Masvingo Urban seat in what promises to be an explosive plebiscite.
    The arrival on the scene by Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) has complicated the election matrix including for the Masvingo Urban seat where Zanu PF is bound to face a stern test from three of its former powerful members who have crossed the floor to join the Joice Mujuru led ZimPF.
    The MDC T which has been the traditional winner of this urban seat has some strong candidates working on the ground to join the fray but again their situation is made more unpredictable by the talk of a coalition with other opposition political parties and in particular ZimPF. Zanu PF has a further complication due to divisions in the party where Team Lacoste which is believed to backing Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa will be out to finish off a faction within the party going by the moniker G40. The Mirror has established three Zanu PF candidates ready to take a plunge for the urban seat and these are the incumbent
    MP and businessman Daniel Shumba, land developer and councillor for Masvingo urban Ward 10 Lovemore Mufamba and another land developer and businessman Godhati Dunira Hungwe. All the three confirmed their interest in Masvingo Urban and expressed the confidence that they will win the seat. They are all said to belong to three different factions with Shumba being linked to the G40, Mufamba was formerly Mujuru before the later was fired from the party.
    Three candidates from ZimPF are believed to be vying for the seat including prominent Masvingo lawyer Rod Makausi although he was non-commital
    when asked for his comment citing coalition talks going on.
    The other two cited politicians refused to talk to The Mirror. MDC T which is traditionally the strongest in the urban seat has current Mayor Hubert Fidze, businessman Takanayi Mureyi and former MP and lawyer Tongai Matutu eyeing the seat.
    "I will await guidance from the party but I am definitely in whether by appointment or
    through the ballot box," said Mureri. "At this point in time I have not made up my mind but you never know what will happen," said Matutu. Fidze said he is not interested although he confirmed that his name is being associated with the constituency. "I want to continue as mayor where my work is noticable unlike
    in Parliament where there are scuffles with no results," said Fidze.
    "If people select me I am ready to be a candidate for the urban constituency but as of now my focus is on retaining my seat as councillor and become mayor
    of the city," said Mufamba in an interview with The Mirror.
    Dunira said he is ready to fight and he will contest for the Parliamentary seat come 2018 harmonised elections.  "It seems my name is the most talked about in Masvingo and there is no doubt I will go for it, those who are afraid of coming out in the open must be told that it is their own problem as they will find the train gone," said Dunira with a chuckle. Shumba said he has beaten many candidates before and he will not lose sleep over the seat. "I urge my fellow party members to keep their money for their families' upkeep. I have beaten so many men before and
    boys are not a problem. Winning this election is not a problem.
    There are many who believe that winning the election is going into bars and pubs and making noise; it's about fundamental issues hence I was rated the best
    Parliamentarian by Star FM," said Shumba in an interview.
    It is believed that Shumba is leaving nothing to chance as he will launch his campaign in style in the coming weeks at a glittering ceremony to be graced by high profile politiburo members from the ruling party. He is also expected to unveil
    a number of projects for women who constitute the majority of voters.top story news
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